Preview: Long layoff for Chivas ends as 'Caps come to town
CHIVAS USA vs VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC
THE HOME DEPOT CENTER, Carson, Calif.
July 7, 2012 (WEEK 18, MLS Game #166)
10:30 p.m. ET (KDOC/KWHY; SNET Pac)
Chivas USA will be looking to haul themselves back into the Western Conference playoff picture when Vancouver Whitecaps FC come calling for a second time this season, Saturday evening at The Home Depot Center. Chivas last played on June 23, reaching a scoreless draw at FC Dallas. Whitecaps FC continued their long road spell with a rebound victory, winning 1-0 at the Colorado Rapids on the Fourth of July.
REFEREE: Juan Guzman. SAR (bench): Corey Parker; JAR (opposite): George Gansner; 4th: Daniel Radford
MLS Career: 15 games; FC/gm: 25.9; Y/gm: 3.8; R: 6; pens: 4
- CHIVAS USA -- OUT: MF Marvin Iraheta (L knee ACL); DOUBTFUL: FW Tristen Bowen (R ankle sprain); MF Miller Bolanos (L hamstring strain); QUESTIONABLE: DF John Valencia (R hamstring strain); FW Juan Agudelo (L knee); PROBABLE: MF Ryan Smith (concussion)
- VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC -- OUT: FW Atiba Harris (R knee surgery recovery); FW Omar Salgado (R foot fracture); GK Brian Sylvestre (R knee surgery recovery); MF John Thorrington (R quad strain); DOUBTFUL: MF Matt Watson (R ankle sprain)
INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: none
SUSPENDED: CHV: Oswaldo Minda (caution accumulation; through July 8) ... VAN: Darren Mattocks (caution accumulation; through July 8)
- SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: VAN: Eric Hassli
- SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: VAN: Martin Bonjour, Gershon Koffie
ALL-TIME (3 meetings): Chivas USA 0 wins, 1 goal ... Whitecaps FC 1 win, 2 goals ... Ties 2
AT CHIVAS USA (2 meetings): Chivas USA 0 wins, 1 goal ... Whitecaps FC 1 win, 2 goals ... Ties 1
FUTURE MATCH: 10/3: Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs. Chivas USA, 7 p.m. PT
- A goal from Whitecaps FC center back Jay DeMerit gave his club a 1-0 win in the first meeting between the teams this season, March 17 at The Home Depot Center. It was the first victory by either team in the all-time series.
- The teams played to a pair of draws last year, Vancouver's first in MLS. The teams reached a scoreless draw at Empire Field in April, then a 1-1 tie in Carson in June.
- Coaches record: Robin Fraser vs. VAN: P2 W0 L1 D2 ... Martin Rennie vs. CHV: P1 W1 L0 D0
LAST MEETING (MLS)
3/17: CHV 0, VAN 1 (DeMerit 68)
- The game's lone goal came in the 68th minute. From a corner kick, Camilo fired in a service that found the head of a completely unmarked Jay DeMerit, who dove to head it past Chivas USA goalkeeper Dan Kennedy for his first career MLS goal.
- CHIVAS USA (4-2-3-1): Dan Kennedy - James Riley, Heath Pearce, Rauwshan McKenzie, Ante Jazic - Peter Vagenas (Ben Zemanski 74), Oswaldo Minda - Ryan Smith (Miller Bolanos 62), Nick LaBrocca, Laurent Courtois - Casey Townsend (Cesar Romero 62).
- VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC (4-2-3-1): Joe Cannon (Brad Knighton 41) - Lee Young-Pyo, Jay DeMerit, Martin Bonjour, Alain Rochat - Jun Marques Davidson, Matt Watson - Camilo (Jordan Harvey 71), Sebastien Le Toux, Davide Chiumiento (Floyd Franks 82) - Eric Hassli.
Chivas USA return to league action after a weekend off, their last MLS match a scoreless draw with FC Dallas in Frisco on June 23. Chivas USA are in a tie for seventh place in the Western Conference with 19 points from 16 games.
HIGHLIGHTS: Chivas, Dallas play to stalemate
- Chivas USA nearly took the lead in the 12th minute. FCD 'keeper Kevin Hartman could only parry Juan Agudelo's shot and the rebound fell to Alejandro Moreno, whose follow-up chance was deflected onto the bar.
- The home side nearly took the lead in the final half-hour when a Daniel Hernandez corner found Brek Shea at the far post, but his header was cleared off the line.
- Chivas USA goalkeeper Dan Kennedy was credited with three saves on the evening, while Hartman had one save between the posts for FCD.
- Chivas USA head coach Robin Fraser made no changes to the team that defeated the Montreal Impact 2-1 at The Home Depot Center.
- CHIVAS USA (4-3-1-2): Dan Kennedy - James Riley, Rauwshan McKenzie, Danny Califf, Ante Jazic - Paolo Cardozo (Casey Townsend 77), Oswaldo Minda, Ben Zemanski - Alejandro Moreno - Juan Agudelo (Nick LaBrocca 63), Cesar Romero (Laurent Courtois 59).
- While Chivas USA were shut out for a second time in three league games, they did record a first defensive clean sheet since May 19, their fourth of the season.
- "Full credit to the team for grinding out the point on the road under difficult conditions. We were under the gun a little bit more in the second half, but we bent and didn't break and we were able to get a couple of good crosses in front of goal," said Chivas head coach Robin Fraser. "We could have turned a couple of those into some pretty dangerous situations. It was a hard fought game for us and I was proud of the group for grinding it out the point."
- Chivas USA have still lost just once on the road this season (in seven games), and are just one of three teams, along with San Jose and Real Salt Lake, with road records above .500. At The Home Depot Center, Chivas are 2-6-1.
- We pride ourselves on being a good road team. We put in another gritty performance here tonight," said goalkeeper Dan Kennedy. " ... We know we've beaten some of the best teams in the league on the road, so we thrive on it. We know we can go into anywhere and win points and that is always our mission."
- Midfielder Nick LaBrocca was able to make his first appearance since suffering a hamstring injury early in the May 23 game vs. New York, coming on for the final 23 minutes vs. FC Dallas.
- "It's a tricky injury that comes back and goes away," LaBrocca said. "Some days you feel good, some days not so much and you never know. It's really just a game of not really having any setbacks. I think we've been pretty good with that. The unfortunate thing with hamstrings is that you're not in the clear until a few months after the injury so we're staying cautious, but it's definitely good to be back out there."
- As the Whitecaps FC match approached, there was an injury concern as Juan Agudelo was unable to take part in full training, suffering from swelling in his knee. In five appearances in all competitions since arriving from the New York Red Bulls, Agudelo has two goals and three assists.
- "I've been having a few problems with the past week and a half with my knee swelling up with just so many games," Agudelo said. "I'm just not used to that much pounding because I've been off it for a while due to surgery. It's just a little minor break so it calms down."
- Chivas striker Tristan Bowen is now available after returning from a year-long loan with Belgian second-division side KSV Roeselare. Bowen has been suffering from an ankle sprain in recent weeks.
- After the draw at FC Dallas, Chivas USA advanced to the semifinals of the U.S. Open Cup for the second time in club history, following a 2-1 win against USL PRO side Charlotte Eagles in Fullerton, Calif. Jose Correa scored both goals for Chivas, the winner coming in extra time.
- "I think some people come in and take a step back and look around and I think Jose just jumped in with two feet," Fraser said. "He's competed from the first game he stepped onto the field and he's battled and scored some very important goals for us. He understands the league and how soccer in this country works and his adaptation process has been great."
- Here's the Chivas USA team: Tim Melia, Jorge Villafana, Rauwshan McKenzie, Danny Califf, James Riley, Peter Vagenas (Ben Zemanski 46), Blair Gavin, Paolo Cardozo (Juan Pablo Angel 72), Laurent Courtois, Jose Correa, Miller Bolanos (Juan Agudelo 39)
- Midfielder Miller Bolanos suffered a hamstring strain in the Open Cup victory against Charlotte, but could be available for selection again soon. Bolanos was forced off the field with the injury in the first half. "It seems as if it's not as bad as it was," Fraser said. "But it's certainly something we have to watch."
- Chivas USA now have a semifinal date with Seattle Sounders FC on July 10.
Chivas USA preview Whitecaps matchup
VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC
Vancouver Whitecaps FC returned to their winning ways, defeating the Colorado Rapids 1-0 on Wednesday evening at Dick's Sporting Goods Park. Whitecaps FC are in third place in the Western Conference with 29 points from 17 games.
HIGHLIGHTS: Whitecaps grab a win on the road
- The game's lone goal came after 43 minutes. A seemingly harmless ball came from Jordan Harvey, but Rapids center back Drew Moor saw his poorly hit clearance deflect straight to the feet of Darren Mattocks, who slotted home from the heart of the area.
- Vancouver goalkeeper Joe Cannon was called upon to make six saves in keeping the clean sheet.
- Whitecaps FC head coach Martin Rennie made three changes to the team that fell to a 3-0 loss to the LA Galaxy at The Home Depot Center. Barry Robson made his MLS debut, coming into the team with Eric Hassli and Jordan Harvey, in place of Jun Marques Davidson, John Thorrington and Sebastien Le Toux.
- VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC (4-2-3-1): Joe Cannon - Lee Young-Pyo, Jay DeMerit, Martin Bonjour, Jordan Harvey - Alain Rochat, Gershon Koffie - Barry Robson (Sebastien Le Toux 57), Darren Mattocks, Davide Chiumiento (Michael Nanchoff 85) - Eric Hassli (Camilo 72).
- It was the third road victory of the season for Whitecaps FC, who went the entirety of their inaugural league campaign without a road win (0-12-5).
- "That's the important thing on the road. The crowd are all here to see the home team make the game and make the tempo, and be creative and exciting, and the away team has to just make sure they stay in the game and make sure they're hard to play against and hard to beat," said Whitecaps FC head coach Martin Rennie.
- It was the second defensive shutout in the last four games for Whitecaps FC, their eighth in 17 games this season.
- "I think that we stayed compact, we didn't get too spread out. We learned a lot from our last away performance where we did get spread out, we pressed the ball in wrong areas in our last game," said Rennie. "But tonight I thought we stayed pretty compact, we gave up a couple chances but not too many, we tried to stop them playing through us and making it difficult for their players to get on the ball in those areas."
- The six saves by goalkeeper Joe Cannon was his season-high. "He had some decent saves, ones that you would hope he would make and you would expect him, with the form he's on, he makes those saves pretty regularly," said Rennie. "Joe's a top goalkeeper in the league, so away from home you're going to rely on your goalkeeper to make a couple saves, and I think he did a good job at that."
- Whitecaps FC's second Designated Player, Barry Robson, made his MLS debut, starting in the midfield and playing 57 minutes.
- "It was a hard game to go into at that altitude and that heat as well as being the first game in a few months I've been on a break," said Robson. "It wasn't easy but the boys really helped. I think we showed a great determination as a team and great resilience to weather the storm and get the win."
- Darren Mattocks scored his fourth goal of the season -- all in the last six games -- and netted for the first time since his double June 10 vs. Houston.
- "I drew it in on the defense and coach Martin told me as soon as I get a chance to put in, just to put it in. Their backline wasn't able to clear it, unfortunately for them, but it was a good opportunity for me, and I just put it away," said Mattocks. Said Rennie: "He took it really well. He only really had that chance, and he finished it really well."
- Jordan Harvey made his first appearance in the first XI since May 10, coming in at left back with Alain Rochat moving into a deep-lying central midfield role.
- Eric Hassli made his first start since May 10, after seven consecutive appearances off the substitutes' bench.
Road Roommates: Hassli and Chiumiento