SEATTLE, WA – Vancouver Whitecaps FC (14W-9L-6D) hope to increase their lead atop the Western Conference standings on Wednesday night when they face longtime rival Seattle Sounders FC (11W-8L-11D) in a crucial Cascadia showdown at CenturyLink Field.
KICKOFF: 7:30 p.m. PT | TV: TSN1 | RADIO: TSN 1040
Here are the key storylines to watch.
WIN AND WE’RE IN
With a win on Wednesday, the ‘Caps would mathematically clinch a playoff spot.
As it stands, they sit atop the West with 48 points – one more than both Portland and Sporting Kansas City and four more than fourth-place Seattle.
Can they increase their cushion? Or will Seattle close the gap?
Wednesday’s match also has major implications in the race for the Cascadia Cup. Both Seattle and Vancouver need wins to stay in contention, while a draw would see Portland emerge as this year’s champions.
For the first time since leaving the club in 2012, Fredy Montero will step foot on the pitch at CenturyLink Field on Wednesday night.
Only this time, he’ll be wearing the Blue and White.
Montero, Seattle’s all-time leading goalscorer in MLS, has been on an absolute tear for Vancouver as of late, scoring seven goals in his last eight starts. His 13 goals on the season equal his previous career-high in MLS. Can he add to that tally on his old stomping grounds? The Colombian has certainly found success against his former club this season, scoring three goals in two matches at BC Place.
Montero spoke about his time in Seattle, and the move to Vancouver, in a candid Players' Tribune article on Tuesday.
“It’s going to be strange to be back in the place where I began my MLS career,” he wrote. “But as soon as the whistle blows, I’m a Whitecap. I’m not just going to Seattle to see my family, I’m going to bring three points back to Canada.”
Click here to read the full piece.
The ‘Caps enter Wednesday’s contest in fine form – to say the least.
Carl Robinson’s men are unbeaten in seven matches and have lost just once in their last 10 outings over the last two months. A win, or draw, on Wednesday would match Vancouver’s longest ever unbeaten streak in MLS.