The Whitecaps shall look to build on their impressive win over Real Salt Lake this weekend when they play host to FC Dallas. The Caps currently have a 1 point lead on 6th place Portland Timbers while each team has 4 games remaining in the regular season. This will be the 3rd and final meeting between Dallas and Vancouver this season after the teams settled for a 2-2 draw at BC Place which was followed up with Vancouver losing 2-1 in Dallas.
Both teams head into this match with most of their top lineup available for selection. Vancouver defensive midfielder Gershon Koffie has been restricted to a walking boot for weeks. He was seen at practice earlier this week without the boot but he is still expected to be limited to rehab for some time. Dallas will be riding high from their impressive 3-1 victory over the Seattle Sounders last week. The Whitecaps have failed to have success against Dallas as they have a cumulative record of 1-2-7 since 2011.
Now would be the time to change their past poor performances. When the Whitecaps lost 2-1 while visiting Dallas a few weeks ago the Whitecaps started strong and should have built themselves a lead. Unfortunately, Mattocks missed several glorious chances. The Whitecaps will be looking to change that this time around.
Whitecaps fans will be hoping for Kekuta Manneh to light up the Dallas defence with his electrifying runs. Manneh has been held back by a lack of fitness this season which has prevented him from a starting role but he has done some damage as an impact sub when opposing team defences have heavy legs. His assist on the Pedro Morales winning goal last week against RSL has Vancouver fans salivating as we head into the last few games of the season. An inform Manneh could be the final piece to boost Vancouver into the 2014 playoffs.
The intense race for the final playoff spot between Vancouver and Portland won’t likely be settled until the final game of the season but a Vancouver victory and a Portland loss this weekend would see the Whitecaps start to emerge as a favourite. If Vancouver were to make the playoffs they would have to play either Real Salt Lake or Dallas on the road so defeating both of these teams so close to the end of the season could give the Whitecaps a significant mental edge.