Whitecaps head coach Teitur Thordarson leads a training session in Ventura, Calif.
Jeffrey Farrar

Despite setbacks, Thordarson still undaunted

VANCOUVER – After a series of preseason matches against MLS opposition, Teitur Thordarson has gotten a feel for the type of competition that his Whitecaps will be up against, and he’s not at all intimidated.

Some may question the first-year MLS coach, but Thordarson is no rookie to the game of soccer. The Icelandic manager has learned from the likes of Arsenal guru Arsène Wenger and, after helping the Estonian national team move up more than 70 spots in the FIFA rankings, he hardly feels daunted by the task in front of him.

“No, not at all,” the Vancouver Whitecaps coach said. “I’m extremely happy with the way we’ve played in all the [preseason] games.”

Detractors may point to a pair of recent setbacks as cause for concern, but Thordarson sees an obvious reason for those results.

“We didn’t win them all, but we had at least 45 minutes in each game which was good quality,” he retorted. “It’s not easy to hold up for 90 minutes when you make so many changes during a game, so I wasn’t surprised that the quality went down in the second half. But I feel that all in all we had very positive games and the team is responding to the way we want to play.”

The most glaring weakness is at striker, where the team has only Atiba Harris to count on at this point.

“I’m very happy with the guys I have here, but I would like to add one or two attacking players, especially two strikers if they’re available, but that’s not easy to find,” Thordarson said. “We are looking, and hopefully we can add someone before we start.”

The club is expected to announce the signing of a veteran striker from Europe soon, while Brazilian attacker Camilo da Silva Sanvezzo could also be signed before the start of the season.

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