The Vancouver Whitecaps can apparently get rid of every player they have and still win matches. Okay, that is an exaggeration, but they have jettisoned several very good players and still managed to replace them and win. It's amazing and that was the case again on Saturday night when they welcomed Real Salt Lake to BC Place and took down the second best team in MLS, 2-1.
The two teams played almost an hour of scoreless soccer before Camilo Sanvezzo finally found the goal in the 58th minute. The preceding hour wasn't bad as both teams played pretty well, but it didn't result in a goal and probably the ugliest moment of that first hour came on the goal.
It should have been a pretty simple play for RSL to defend, but they made a hash of it. They were on their heels, unsure of what they wanted to do and when the ball came into the box, they rushed a poor clearance. Eventually the clearance was deflected into the path of Camilo, who slid the ball pas Nick Rimando for the opening tally.
Dane Richards doubled Vancouver's lead six minutes later with a rare display of skill and class. With the ball 20 yards from goal, Richards picked out a corner and hit a peach of a shot, curling and finessing the ball around a defender then into the net for a gorgeous foal by the man known for his pace, not skill.
RSL did their best to get back in the match, but it was too late. Even Nat Borchers' 92nd minute goal didn't really put a scare in the Caps, who held on for a very good three points.