VANCOUVER, BC – Whitecaps FC 2 are back home this Sunday when they host LA Galaxy II at Thunderbird Stadium for Bark at the 'Bird.
WFC2 (3W-6L-4D) are looking to bounce back after dropping a tough loss at Oklahoma City Energy FC on Tuesday evening.
Los Dos (6W-5L-1D) visit Vancouver on the second leg of their Pacific Northwest road swing, following a 1-0 loss at Seattle Sounders FC 2 on Thursday.
The two Western Conference foes previously faced each other last month, when Galaxy II escaped with a 2-1 win at StubHub Centre. Strikers Billy Schuler and Caleb Clarke combined for the 'Caps score in the first half.
Besides the popular bubble soccer, food trucks and face-painting, here are what fans could look forward to on the field.
WFC2 shut out Arizona United SC 2-0 in their last home match.
Thunderbird Stadium is starting to build an intimidating reputation around the USL as a tough to place for visiting teams to play in.
The young 'Caps are undefeated after five matches in Vancouver this season, and have won the last two in typical entertaining fashion.
Perhaps buoyed by the lively supporter groups, WFC2 have found the winning recipe at home, highlighted by a shutout win against Arizona United SC in their last appearance at the 'Bird. Clarke and Brett Levis found the net for the home side and the duo will look to provide the offensive spark again this Sunday.
MOMENTUM OFF HISTORIC WIN
WFC2 won't need to look too far back to find inspiration for this Sunday. All they need to do is watch the tape from last weekend's matchup between their MLS counterparts, when Whitecaps FC put an end to LA Galaxy's 29-match undefeated streak at StubHub Center.
The young 'Caps are bolstered by players on loan from the MLS side so the recent success against the Galaxy club could easily rub off on WFC2. First-teamer Marco Bustos has appeared in the last three WFC2 matches and looks prime to break out.
Clarke finds the net versus Monarchs SLC.
BACK AT FULL STRENGTH
Having played four matches in 10 days, Whitecaps FC 2 head coach Alan Koch had to shuffle his young lineup to keep lively legs on the pitch during the recent road trip.
Now that the Blue and White are back home and with the next match not until a week after, the 'Caps are more likely to field a starting XI that could exploit the Galaxy II backline best.
It will be interesting to see if Bustos and Clarke get the chance to play alongside each other and potentially cause problems for Los Dos.
Galaxy II Jack McBean and Ariel Lassiter are among the league leaders in shots per game, while Raul Mendiola is tied for seventh with 1.18 points per game so WFC2 will need to be locked and loaded for the contest.
Whitecaps FC 2 current roster:
Goalkeepers: Spencer Richey, Mark Village, Marco Carducci*
Fullbacks: Jordan Haynes, Chris Serban
Centre backs: Jackson Farmer, Craig Nitti
Centre midfielders: Ian Christianson, Mitch Piraux, Tyler Rosenlund, Ben McKendry*, Marco Bustos*, Andre Lewis*
Wide midfielders: Victor Blasco, Jovan Blagojevic, Brett Levis, Sahil Sandhu
Strikers: Mackenzie Pridham, Billy Schuler, Caleb Clarke*
*On loan from WFC MLS roster
Kickoff for Sunday's match is set for 2 p.m. PT.
Fans who are bringing their dogs are encouraged to to print and fill out the waiver form before coming to the match.
Tickets for all WFC2 home matches are available at whitecapsfc.com/wfc2tickets.
Come and see the next generation of Whitecaps FC stars as USL arrives in Vancouver. WFC2 matches are a unique and affordable experience for fans, families, students, and supporters. Season Tickets start as low as $118, with prorated prices available. Flex packs are also available to fit your schedule – get seven tickets to use any way you want, to any matches you want. For more information on all WFC2 ticket options, call 604-484-7862 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.