You know it’s a been a bad weekend for Canada’s pro soccer teams when the Montreal Impact arguably had the best 72 hour period since Friday… and they had a bye and that despite the Whitecaps won their game against the Earthquakes.
Speaking of “byes” the Vancouver Whitecaps and designated player Kenny Miller have parted ways after “coming to a mutual agreement” to end the Scotsman’s time here in Canada. A rather melancholy ending to the weekend for the ‘Caps after their 3-2 win over San Jose on the weekend and their 40th anniversary celebrations.
“We are thankful for the contributions Kenny made both on and off the pitch during his time in Vancouver,” said Whitecaps head coach Carl Robinson. “He has been a great role model, a constant professional, and someone who I consider a very good friend. We wish him and his family all the best.”
Miller, 34, joined Whitecaps FC in June 2012 and during his time with the club made 45 appearances in all competitions, registering 13 goals and adding three assists. Many are expecting Nigel Reo-Coker to follow Miller out the dressing room door for good in the next few weeks.
As for the game itself head coach Carl Robinson got the start he wanted as the Whitecaps stormed to a 3-0 lead in the opening 20 minutes and then watched nervously as his side limped to the win despite Chris Wondolowski adding a second-half stoppage time goal to his 45th minute penalty-kick conversion in the first.
In Edmonton The chilly temps were supposed to work in the Eddies favour but unfortunately for the hosts the boys from the Sunshine State brought their own heat as Fort Lauderdale walked away with a 3-0 win. The barely above zero temps kept many of the 3,276 ticket holders away but it was Edmonton’s offence which continued to be most noticeable by it’s absence. The Eddies are a league worst .063 in shooting efficiency managing just 2 goals on 32 shots in four league games and mustered just three shots on goal in thier latest effort .
Speaking of cold – the Ottawa Fury with possibly their worst effort of the season continued to struggle offensively as well losing 2-1 in Atlanta to the Silverbacks. The Fury’s only goal coming from the head of Omar Jarun, yes Omar Jarun, the centreback who was pressed into service as a target man late in the game by a desperate head coach Marc Dos Santos.
Dos Santos summed it up well telling the Ottawa Sun, “It wasn’t good enough from us,” he said. “I felt the team was tired, guys (were) injured before the game. We can’t take positives from a game like that, we can’t.”
The Fury have managed just 15 shots on target in four games, with Saturday night not straying from the norm as they tested Atlanta goalkeeper Eric Ati just four times.
And yes desperation may be settling into it’s usual pitch side seat in Toronto as Toronto FC despite several decent chances from their high priced help went down 2-1 at the hands of the New England Revolution. The Revolution’s first ever win in Toronto made all the more aggravating by an infestation of bugs – the latest plague to befall this seemingly hopeless franshise.
Frustration is mounting for the side as despite the return of the “big names” from injury they dropped their third straight game after opening the season with a promising 3-1 record.
“I think we have to learn how to win at TFC,” Nelsen told reporters after the match. “It seems like, if we concede on our home field, it seems to be the worst thing that ever happened. We just have to get a bit more confidence at home. If something sets us back, so be it. We need to keep playing.”
Up this week round two of the Voyageurs Cup (officially known by the corporate world as the Amway Canadian Championship) on Wednesday night as Edmonton hosts defending champions Montreal and Toronto FC host the Whitecaps. The return games will both be played a week later.
Next weekend in MLS play Toronto FC have (perhaps thankfully) another weekend off from league play while Vancouver will travel on from their mid-week game in Toronto to Columbus and Montreal will make the long trip back from Edmonton to host Sporting KC.
In weekend NASL action the Fury will host Tampa Bay for the first ever meeting between the two sides while Edmonton travels to Indianapolis to play the Fury’s expansion cousins the Indy 11 for the first time.