VANCOUVER, B.C. - One could almost write the storyline of Vancouver Whitecaps games in advance these days, as an inability to take chances and defensive mistakes continue to cost the team points and hinder their chase for a place in the postseason.
Saturday's 1-0 home loss to the New York Red Bulls wasn't a killer blow, but it certainly makes the rest of their season more difficult.
Not that it was a bad performance against New York. Vancouver created chance after chance. The problem was that none of them hit the target.
"I lost three points today, so I don't take any solace," Robinson told reporters after the match. "If I tried to just talk about the performance and how good we were and how many chances we created, I leave myself open for you to say 'Robbo, you didn't win.' We didn't win.
It was a frustrating afternoon all round for Vancouver, who remain four points off the playoff pace in the West with games quickly running out. Adding to those frustrations was the ejection of 'Caps coach Carl Robinson on the stroke of halftime for what referee Sorin Stoica said afterwards was for "acting in an irresponsible manner" in protesting a throw-in ruling. But Robinson was still upbeat about the overall showing.
"There are lots of positives in there. It is a confidence thing," he said. "We played with good confidence today, we just didn't score the goals, which has happened numerous times."
The Whitecaps had 12 attempts on goal, but Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles didn't have a save to make, as the efforts flew narrowly past both posts in each half.
It was the same old story for Vancouver who have now been shut out for the sixth time in their last seven MLS outings.
"Every game you lose is frustrating," midfielder Fraser Aird said after the game. "We don’t want to go out there and lose any game, especially because the amount of chances we had today, we had enough chances to win two games, to be honest.
"But right now it’s just not going our way. We’re just not getting that little bit of luck, to get that first goal, I think that’s massive for us. If we get that first goal then we’re at home and the fans are behind us, it’s our game to lose."