DORSET, ENGLAND – Vancouver Whitecaps FC’s Development Squad had their first taste of English football competition on Tuesday, falling 4-2 to their counterparts from AFC Bournemouth.
“This match was exactly what this trip was meant for,” noted head coach Nick Dasovic after the match. “It was a higher tempo for our group, and they adjusted well after conceding early on. We played some really good football at times. The boys showed excellent character in fighting back, and coming close to getting a result before Bournemouth scored in the final moments. Overall I’m really pleased with the team performance, with a number of strong individual showings as well.”
The match started at a fast pace. On 15 minutes, Bournemouth – who officially list their side as U-21 – scored on a counterattack goal from United States senior international Emerson Hyndman to go up 1-0. On 35 minutes Simon Colyn had a close range chance to tie things up, but could not convert as the score remained the same going into the break.
For the remainder of the half the backline held strong, with right back T-boy Fayia showing well alongside Brendan McDonough and Connor Guilherme at centre back. Jalen Watson also did well at left back, coming in as a late replacement for Gabriel Escobar, who had a knock.
The second half started with the ‘Caps coming out strong, moving the ball well in possession and putting pressure on the home team. However it would be Bournemouth who scored against the run of play to make it 2-0 through Jake Scrimshaw.
Five minutes later the ‘Caps conceded a penalty kick. Goalkeeper Thomas Hasal got his hand on the shot from Tyrell Hamilton but could not keep it out. Three minutes later another penalty was called, but this time Hasal dove low to his right for a huge save on Jaidon Anthony.
That energized the ‘Caps to battle back, as Theo Bair finished a chance five minutes later to make it 3-1. On 85 minutes Georges Mukumbilwa made it 3-2 after a great run and cross from Bair.
As the ‘Caps pressed for an equalizer, Bournemouth added a dagger from Jordan Zemura in the waning moments for a 4-2 final score.
Next up for the Development Squad is a match versus Brighton & Hove Albion U-23 on Friday. Brighton are currently second place in the Premier League 2 standings.
Thomas Hasal*; T-boy Fayia+, Brendan McDonough* (Emiliano Brienza 62’), Connor Guilherme, Jalen Watson+; Simon Colyn* (Damiano Pecile HT), Patrick Metcalfe, David Norman* (Chance Carter 65’); Georges Mukumbilwa, Theo Bair* (Brandon Cambridge 87’), Kamron Habibullah (Brandon Cambridge HT, Nicholas Fussell 76’)
* MLS roster
+ Academy call-up