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Whitecaps vs. Sounders: 3 Questions With 86 Forever

Oh man, remember when Miguel Montano and Tyson Wahl were on the Sounders? Those were the days...
Oh man, remember when Miguel Montano and Tyson Wahl were on the Sounders? Those were the days...

As we like to do, we reached out to our Vancouver Whitecaps blogger Benjamin Massey of 86 Forever. Here are our questions and his answers:

1 - Prior to the season many observers thought that the Whitecaps would be defined by their offense. It's been OK, but not great. What will it take to get better?

When we say the Whitecaps offense has been "not great" we need to be careful. Of course one goal per game is a long way short of amazing, but there is a tactical element there, as when he gets in front by a goal, Martin Rennie is fond of going straight into a bunker rather than Tom Soehn's preference to throw guys up looking for the insurance goal. It's dull to watch but tends to work. By no means is the offense clicking yet, but it's doing better than the standings say.

That said, there's plenty of room for improvement. Moving the ball through midfield continues to be an obstacle, and Vancouver's general incompetence attacking the wings has been a bugbear all season. Hopefully the arrival of Barry Robson will solve the former problem, given time, but with Rennie's refusal to use potential true wingers like Russell Teibert or Michael Nanchoff Vancouver's attack will come down the middle for the foreseeable future.

2 - What addition to the backline is the best example of why the defense is so strong this season?

Without question, Lee Young-pyo. How we got that guy as a non-designated player is beyond me; Bob Lenarduzzi must have pictures of the guy in a compromising position or something because WOW. He has almost certainly been Vancouver's best player this season, and while his crossing hasn't quite lived up to expectation his magnificent athleticism, his near-perfect judgment, and ability to play the ball out of trouble is making for great success. Martin Bonjour, a little mistake-prone but generally solid and with good poise, deserves an honourable mention.

3 - I want to ask about either Seb Le Toux as a 'Cap or Martin Rennie, so just free form on one of them?

There's been a bit of impatience among Whitecaps fans with Martin Rennie at times. Not all of his lineups have been spot on and, tactically, there are a few question marks. (Nobody's calling for Tom Soehn to come back, I want to make that clear, but at the same time there's a bit of discontent with the coach every time a game doesn't go our way and sometimes even when they do.)

Well, that's natural. This is soccer. However, the key for Whitecaps fans is going to be patience. We all forgive a young player making the occasional error his first year in MLS, and in coaching terms Martin's that young player. This is his first crack at MLS and he had only three years in the second division before that. He will be very much learning the ropes; gaining experience to go with his apparent genius. Hell, he's younger than Joe Cannon. I'm not sure I really have a point here; just that I hope the Whitecaps' surprising start isn't leading anyone to expect too much instant perfection.

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