2019 Match Preview #9: Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs Philadelphia Union: Time to Bounceback

After a disappointing result away to Orlando last week, the Caps look to bounce back as they look to climb back into the Western Conference playoff picture. While the season is but 8 games old, the Caps have left a lot of points on the board to date, so a victory at home would do a lot to help the cause as they tread towards the summer. Against Philadelphia, they have a chance to do just that, facing a team in decent form, but one that is without their star player Marco Fabian, who will bow out this one due to injury.

Vancouver Whitecaps:

Projected Starting XI

Injuries: Jhesser Khemiri (Knee, Week-to-Week) Micheal Baldisimo (Ankle, Week-To-Week), David Norman Jr (Foot, Week-To-Week)

Record: 1-5-2

After fielding an experimental lineup against Orlando, MDS will likely return to familiar formation at home against Philly. The usual Goalkeeper + Back four combination will likely remain intact, with Maxime Crepeau defending the goal behind Doneil Henry, Erik Godoy, Ali Adnan and Scott Sutter looking likely to slot in. Jake Nerwinski could also feature, as he has been a mainstay in the lineup at home. In the midfield, Hwang Inbeom and Jon Erice will definitely feature, the question remains who will slot in next to them. Don’t be surprised if its either Felipe or Russell Teibert, depending on how MDS wants to attack Philly. Up top, we will likely return to the Yordy Reyna as a lone false nine striker, with Lucas Venuto and either Lass Bangoura and PC filling in the spot alongside him. Look for the Caps to press high and chase goals, especially after a lacklustre offensive performance the last time out. They will aim to recapture something similar to the LAFC match, where they snuffed out the cream of the crop in MLS, but falling to porous Orlando left a sour taste in their mouth.

BTSVancity Player to Watch:

After a good performance against LAFC, we have our first double BTSVancity player to watch with Yordy Reyna, as he will likely return to the positon that brought him that success. Look for him to have a dominant performance, including some goals.

Honourable Mentions: Lucas Venuto, Jon Erice


Will MDS return to familiar formation after another failed road experiment? Will be interesting to monitor

How will the Caps fare against another hot team, as they have had some good games against teams they were seen to have no chance against. How will they perform this time out?

Philadelphia Union:

Manager: Jim Curtin

Record: 4-3-1

Philadelphia has had a good start to the season, as their new additions have vaulted them into 4th place after a 6th place finish last season. Often a team that kind of just lurks on the outside of the playoff picture, they have found a formula that works thanks to key players such as Andre Blake, Aurelion Collin, Haris Medjunanin, Alejandro Bedoya and now Marco Fabian. They play simple but effective football, getting the ball to their midfielders as they get the ball into Fabians feet. Fabian’s absence should be important, as it will allow the Caps to dictate more of the middle than they would have hoped otherwise. A good, direct team, they should provide an interesting matchup for the Marc Dos Santos crew.

Score Predictions:

Alexandre: 3-0 Caps, with Reyna, Venuto and Nerwinski

Karim: 2-0 Caps with Reyna and Hwang

Keveren: 2-0 Caps, with Reyna and Montero

Felix: 3-1 for the Caps, PC, Reyna and Henry, with Bedoya for Philly

Bryan: 2-1 Caps, Venuto and Reyna, Medjunanin for Philly

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