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The Whitecaps Have Been In Good Form But It’s “Andiamo” For Vanni Sartini In The Second Half Of The Season

The Whitecaps have been in good form lately going 6-2-2, one of the best teams in MLS, but that isn’t enough for Vanni Sartini and company. After a thrilling 1-0 victory over LAFC, Vancouver is looking for more but staying grounded and finding their groove.

“Training was really good, today was kind of a low day… today is kind of a recovery day after yesterday but the mood is really good, everyone is I would say, pumped up. [In] this final home game before hitting the road for the next 2 we know it’s very important to make points against Minnesota. I think we are in a good moment and I say, let’s try and keep going.”

This is a good sign as the Vancouver Whitecaps host Minnesota United FC at home Friday night. The two teams come in with identical 7-8-3 records and 24 points. The two squads sit 8th and 9th respectively in the west trailing the Seattle Sounders for the final playoff spot. After a big win over top-seeded LAFC, Vanni Sartini and Vancouver were feeling good.

A Late 1-0 Win Over LAFC

It was a big 1-0 win over LAFC last weekend thanks to a late 89th-minute goal from new Designated Player Andres Cubas. Vanni Sartini spoke about his team’s play against LA and how they were able to smoother their attack.

Whitecaps Have Been In Good Form | Sports Talk Line
Whitecaps Have Been In Good Form Of Late

“General thoughts are that we played very well, we did what we planned during the week so we shut them down doing a very good defensive game… Everyone did their job really well so it was really hard for them to break us and find space.” He would mention a slight tactical change they made against LAFC.

“Well it changed a little bit at the approach of the end of the game so tactically we decided to keep the same formation and keep the same principle but to apply those principles 20 meters out. So that allowed us to maintain the compactness and be ready and conceded must less dangerous [possessions] to the other team, because we concede lots of possession to the other team but it’s not dangerous at the moment because we are doing really well in keeping our distance and not conceding space in behind.”

“We’re a team that thrives on organization, so for us the tactic is really the key. So when we are at end of the game most of the teams that we face become a little bit unstructured, we keep our structure and we can find the pocket, so I think those are the reasons besides the belief and intensity that you were saying before that have helped us in this run.” On the Whitecaps groove in the last 10 matches.

Vanni Sartini on the play of Pedro Vite when I asked him what he can do to see more time on the pitch.

 | Sports Talk Line
Pedro Vite Played Well Against LAFC But Can He Get More Minutes?

“Training better, that he’s [been] doing now for the last two weeks. It is a league with no intensity even if you are Lionel Messi you are going to have trouble and problems because everything here is 1000 miles per hour and the physicality of the game is really high. So what he did in the last couple of weeks is put the intensity in training and that translated to the good performance he had in the last 20 minutes so he needs to keep working like that.”

The Caps Form And Looking Ahead To Minnesota United FC

It’s one thing to win in this league but it’s another thing how you win and the Whitecaps know it.

“The other thing, it’s of course, is the player saw the results, of course, we have to be honest we were also a little lucky in the beginning in the win against Toronto in the last second, the tie with San Jose in that crazy game. So those results fueled the confidence on the players and now the players are 100% locked on what we’re doing and when you have everyone really, really, really believing in it even in tough situations.”

“I want to remind you that week when we had 10 guys off because they were all in health and safety protocol and we were able to pull the victory in Calgary, and win in Kansas City and almost get a point in Charlotte where we only had 14 players available. So I think the belief now is at a top-level and we need to work to maintain it.”

Now the team must look ahead to Minnesota United FC and a dangerous player in Emanuel Reynoso who Vanni Sartini will definitely have a game plan for. “Minnesota is a good team it can become a stellar team if Reynoso finds space to play.” He would continue about the play of Reynoso.

 | Sports Talk Line
Watch Out For Emanuel Reynoso Friday Night

“I think that in terms of number 10 quality, like a guy who can invent something I think Reynoso is the best player in the league. It’s the guy that really transforms a team from an average team to a really good team.”

“So last year we basically shut him off with our pressing and it was really hard for him to receive the ball between lines and he always had to drop in front of our midfielders to receive the ball. I would say that the plan is going to be the same this season.”

Injury Updates For The Vancouver Whitecaps

“So Cristian [Gutiérrez] is still out, still recovering. Thomas, unfortunately in the game he had a little knock again, nothing major, nothing big but his fingers got swollen a little so he won’t be available for selection this week. Michael is recovering he is going to be kind of doubtful I would say, but it’s back on being available for the team, he’s in that period where he does one exercise and then stops.”

Vancouver Whitecaps Injury Update Ahead Of Friday Night

Erik Godoy was back in the starting 20 last week so he could be an option at CB for the Whitecaps come Friday night. Expect to see a steady diet of Ranko Veselinovic and Javain Brown who have both played key roles in the back 3 for Vancouver.

Sports Talk Line And The Vancouver Whitecaps

The Vancouver Whitecaps look to build on their impressive 1-0 victory over LAFC as they take on Minnesota United FC on Friday night. A win over Minnesota would leap them further up the standings and closer to that playoff line in the MLS Western Conference.

It’s a 7:30 pm start from BC Place Friday night and there will be added reasons to head down to the Stadium. “I think that they gave us the push that we needed to win the game. So we’re really excited very excited. We know I know. We know that also. The club is really excited they’re preparing the fan zone for the game on Friday. So in front of the stadium where Terry Fox Plaza there will be beers, burgers and you know if the fans even want to come earlier and have their enjoyable moment there and then come to the game, prepared and warmed up to support us because we need it Friday.”

The Sports Talk Line Network will have you covered for the rest of the Whitecaps season. Make sure to follow me on Twitter @JoshuaGriffith0 for the latest news and notes about your Vancouver Whitecaps.

“Winning Friday would be huge, huge, huge and it would be fantastic to celebrate with the fans at the end of the game like we did last game”

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