Cristian Techera - Vancouver Whitecaps FC - TSN

Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Real Salt Lake
2017 MLS Match Preview
BC Place – Vancouver, B.C.
Saturday, Sept. 9 – 10 pm ET
WATCH: TSN in Canada, MLS LIVE in the US

A pair of Western Conference squads in fine form will square off on Saturday night, when the fourth-place Vancouver Whitecaps will welcome Mike Petke and Real Salt Lake to BC Place.

Vancouver enter Saturday’s contest in a solid position. The ‘Caps are unbeaten in three and 5-2-2 in their last nine MLS matches, and currently have the third-best points per game average in the West. They were off last weekend due to the international break, but notched an impressive victory in their last match, winning 2-1 at Orlando just three days after drawing Seattle1-1 in Vancouver.

Though they’re only two points behind FC Dallas for the West’s sixth and final playoff spot, RSL have played the most games in the conference and are looking at a difficult climb up the table. They do enter the weekend on a bit of a hot streak, however. They throttled the Colorado Rapids4-1 on Aug. 26 in their last match, and are 5-1-3 in their last nine games.

Salt Lake also enter Saturday’s contest without any major concerns coming off the international break. Goalkeeper Nick Rimando (US) and attackers Jefferson Savarino (Venezuela) and Albert Rusnak (Slovakia) were all with their respective national teams over the last week, but Rimando and Savarino didn’t see any game action and Rusnak played limited minutes. Barring any travel issues, all three should be good to start on Saturday.

Vancouver can’t quite say the same. ‘Caps defender Kendall Waston and midfielder Christian Bolanos both logged major minutes for Costa Rica during the break, including in the Ticos’ 3-0 win against Trinidad & Tobago on Tuesday. We’ll see if Carl Robinson chooses to play them on Saturday, or give them a bit of a breather ahead of Vancouver’s home match against Minnesota next Wednesday.

Vancouver Whitecaps

  • Suspended: None
  • Int’l Duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT – D David Edgar (PCL, MCL tear), M Matias Laba (torn ACL)

Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1, left to right)
David Ousted – Jordan Harvey, Tim Parker, Aaron Maund, Sheanon Williams – Tony Tchani, Andrew Jacobson – Cristian Techera, Yordy Reyna, Christian Bolanos – Fredy Montero

Notes: Brek Shea scored his third goal of the season in the win over Orlando, his first since scoring in back-to-back games May 5-12. Shea returned to the lineup after a two-game absence, coming into a wide midfield role and playing the full 90 minutes. … Erik Hurtado collected his second assist of the season at Orlando, his first since the second game of the season on March 11. Hurtado was making his first start since April 1, having made three appearances as a substitute over the intervening 20 league matches, totaling nine minutes.

Real Salt Lake

  • Suspended: Danny Acosta (red card)
  • Int’l Duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT – F Chad Barrett (knee surgery), M Jordan Allen (knee surgery), M Omar Holness (knee surgery), M Ricardo Velazco (ankle surgery); QUESTIONABLE: D Demar Phillips (hamstring injury), D Marcelo Silva (hamstring injury)

Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1, left to right)
Nick Rimando – Chris Wingert, Justen Glad, Marcelo Silva, Tony Beltran – Kyle Beckerman, Sunny – Joao Plata, Albert Rusnak, Jefferson Savarino – Luis Silva

Notes: RSL scored four or more goals in back-to-back games for a second time this season, scoring 10 goals in consecutive wins July 4 (6-2 at LA) and July 19 (4-1 at POR). Real’s four games with four or more goals is tied for the most in MLS this season (with Atlanta and Chicago). … Rusnak collected his 11th assist of the season, his third consecutive game with an assist, with four assists in that span. The 11 assists are fourth-most in MLS this season; Rusnák has played a part in five of the last nine goals scored by RSL (1 goal, 4 assists)

All-Time Series

  • Overall: Vancouver 7 wins (21 goals) … RSL 6 wins (18 goals) … 4 ties
  • At Vancouver: Vancouver 6 wins (16 goals) … RSL 1 win (5 goals) … 1 tie


Referee: Allen Chapman
Assistant Referees: Corey Rockwell, Apolinar Mariscal
Fourth Official: Baboucarr Jallow
VAR: Kevin Stott