FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS – Vancouver Whitecaps FC (1W-0L-2D) remain unbeaten in this young Major League Soccer season after playing to a scoreless draw with New England Revolution (0W-2L-1D) Saturday at Gillette Stadium.
A spectacular first-half performance from goalkeeper David Ousted, in which the Dane made an early MLS Save of the Week favourite, helped Whitecaps FC keep a clean sheet and claim their second straight road point on a windy afternoon in Foxborough, Massachusetts.
Whitecaps FC head coach Carl Robinson made two changes to his starting lineup after last weekend’s 1-1 draw with Chivas USA. Centre back Johnny Leveron made his first appearance of the season with Jay DeMerit being rested. And a healthy Russell Teibert returned to the squad, replacing midfielder Pedro Morales.
With Teibert slotting in on the right wing, Kenny Miller moved back into a central attacking midfielder position behind lone striker Darren Mattocks – as was the case in Vancouver’s opening day win over New York Red Bulls. Miller also wore the captain’s armband in DeMerit’s absence.
As expected, the Revolution got off to an energetic start in their home opener after suffering consecutive losses in their first two matches of the season.
New England had two free kicks and three corners in the first 10 minutes alone, but Vancouver managed to weather the early storm thanks largely to the play of Ousted.
The Dane’s best save came in the fifth minute, when he acrobatically palmed away a near-post flick from Andy Dorman after Chris Tierney whipped in a dangerous corner. He also smothered a pair of decent strikes from Saer Sene and Diego Fagundez in the 20th and 33rd minutes respectively.
Starting Lineups: New England Revolution vs. Whitecaps FC
New England had the better chances in the first 45 minutes, but Vancouver began to settle in towards the later stages. The ‘Caps controlled 55 per cent of possession, though the windy conditions prevented either side from maintaining any sustained pressure.
Vancouver’s best chance of the half came in stoppage time, when Miller let loose a curling strike from the top of the penalty arc but Revs goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth dove to his left to make the save.
Robinson brought in Morales at the half in an attempt to add a spark to his side’s attack and it had the desired effect. In the 51st minute, Morales sent a ball over the top to Miller, who had his half volley parried away by Shuttleworth.
Just a few minutes later, Morales sent a well-taken free kick just wide of the goal as the Blue and White began to push forward. The ‘Caps looked the more lively side after the break, but New England also had their fair share of opportunities.
In the 67th minute, Fagundez found some space in the area before sending his strike inches wide of the left post. And in the 79th minute, former Whitecaps FC midfielder Daigo Kobayashi saw his first-time effort from the penalty spot deflected wide.
In the end, neither side would find the back of the net on this day, as the match ended in a scoreless draw. The ‘Caps have now conceded just two goals in three matches this season.
With their first pair of road matches this season behind them, Whitecaps FC are back at BC Place next Saturday for a meeting with Houston Dynamo. Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. PT.
Retired defender Young-Pyo Lee will be honoured prior to the match.
Whitecaps FC season tickets start at the prorated price of just $331 and single-match tickets start at $22, subject to applicable fees. The 'Caps also offer a flexible range of ticket products, including half-season tickets ($244), 5-packs ($149), student season tickets ($199), and a youth soccer half-season ticket ($100). For more information on all Whitecaps FC ticket options, call 604.669.9283 ext. 2 or visit whitecapsfc.com/tickets.
Tweet of the Game
Stat of the Game
Ousted made three first-half saves to keep the score level. He also had three catches and two punches in a worthy Budweiser Man of the Match performance.
Budweiser Man of the Match: David Ousted
Referee: Hilario Grajeda
Shots: New England 17 – Vancouver 8
Shots on Goal: New England 3 – Vancouver 2
Saves: New England 2 – Vancouver 3
Fouls: New England 13 – Vancouver 13
Offsides: New England 0 – Vancouver 3
Corners: New England 9 – Vancouver 5
8’ – VAN – Nigel Reo-Coker
38’ – NE – Andy Dorman
83’ – VAN – Jordan Harvey
88’ – VAN – Matias Laba
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
1.David Ousted; 33.Steven Beitashour, 40.Andy O'Brien, 16.Johnny Leverón, 2.Jordan Harvey; 20.Nigel Reo-Coker (28.Gershon Koffie 70’), 15.Matías Laba; 31.Russell Teibert (23.Kekuta Manneh 67’), 9.Kenny Miller, 7.Sebastián Fernández (77.Pedro Morales 45’); 11.Darren Mattocks
70.Paolo Tornaghi, 19.Erik Hurtado, 22.Christian Dean, 29.Nicolás Mezquida
New England Revolution
22.Bobby Shuttleworth; 2.Andrew Farrell, 5.A.J. Soares, 23.Jose Goncalves, 8.Chris Tierney; 12.Andy Dorman; 14.Diego Fagundez, 11.Kelyn Rowe (6.Scott Caldwell 89), 24.Lee Nguyen (92.Dimitry Imbongo 81’), 39.Saer Sene (16.Daigo Kobayashi 58’); 10.Teal Bunbury
18.Brad Knighton, 15.Stephen McCarthy, 25.Darrius Barnes, 27.Jerry Bengston