Robinson hails Kudo's contributions in Whitecaps' comeback win over Timbers

VANCOUVER, B.C. – The Vancouver Whitecaps made it maximum points from their two Cascadia Cup clashes so far this season, fighting back from a 1-0 halftime deficit to stun the visiting Portland Timbers 2-1 at BC Place on Saturday.

The home side snatched two goals in a six-minute spell to take all three points, marking the first time this year the Whitecaps have won after going a goal behind. Masato Kudo grabbed his first MLS goal to tie things up, before Timbers' goalkeeper Jake Gleeson allowed a Christian Bolanos cross to squirm through his legs for the winner.

"I thought from the first minute to the last minute, the intensity of the team, the effort, the application was spot on. The football took care of itself today,” said 'Caps coach Carl Robinson afterwards. “We played some super stuff. We didn't score enough from our chances.

"Sometimes you've got to roll your sleeves up, pull your socks up, and get on with it and don't feel sorry for yourself, and the boys didn't in the second half. We continued with the intensity and we continued to create chances. It was a little bit fortuitous, the winning goal, as it happened. I think we deserved to win."

After a mixed start to the season, the Whitecaps are now unbeaten in five at home. Yet with a third of their season gone, it's still difficult to figure out what kind of team the 'Caps are this year.

Robinson is hoping that it's the side that produced the second-half display against the Timbers, but with slightly better finishing.

"We showed today what we can be," Robinson added. "Some of the football from certain players, and I think every man from one to 11 did very, very strong – but that's the standard I require from them.

"When they drop below that standard, me and my coaches, we've got to be on these guys. They're good players. They don't mean to turn in bad performances or not play to their level."

Kudo's equalizer represents a huge weight off his shoulders, the Japanese international finally opening his Vancouver account in his fourth start and seventh overall appearance. He'll be hoping he can now push on and claim a regular place in the starting lineup.

"It was his birthday yesterday," Robinson said of Kudo. "I sent him a message last night and he promised me he'd get a goal. He did get a goal today, which is great. Nice to get your first goal. It showed what it meant to the group. We're delighted to have Masato here and hopefully there's more to come."