The Vancouver Whitecaps dropped a 3-1 result to Japanese J2 League side V-Varen Nagasaki in the Pacific Rim Cup semifinals played at Hawaii's Aloha Stadium in a match that represented the debut for new head coach Marc Dos Santos.
Dos Santos fielded a 4-3-3 formation in his first match and new acquisition Lass Bangoura made an early positive impression during a first half that saw the Whitecaps create a handful of scoring chances.
However, Nagasaki would take the lead just before the stroke of halftime and then Yohei Otake scored twice in a three-minute span right after the break to put the result out of reach. A goal by Whitecaps academy product David Norman Jr. with nine minutes remaining prevented the shutout.
The Whitecaps changed over their lineup to start the second half and showing his stated commitment to the club's homegrown players, Dos Santos fielded five current academy players, including 15-year-old Kamron Habibullah. The second half also saw Brazilian trialist Matheus Queiroz in action along with unsigned second round 2019 SuperDraft pick Brendan McDonough.
Vancouver will face Iwaki FC in the Pacific Rim Cup 3rd-place match on Sunday, while V-Varen Nagasaki take on MLS side Real Salt Lake for the trophy on the same day.
- NAG - Yu Hasegawa 44'
- NAG - Yohei Otake 47'
- NAG - Yohei Otake 49'
- VAN - Norman Jr. (Colyn) 81'
Vancouver Whitecaps lineup (1st half / 4-3-3): #18 Zac MacMath -- #46 Brett Levis, #13 Derek Cornelius, #2 Doneil Henry, #28 Jake Nerwinski -- #8 Felipe Martins, #6 Jon Erice, #15 Andy Rose -- #94 Victor "PC" Giro, #50 Theo Bair, #19 Lass Bangoura
Vancouver Whitecaps lineup (2nd half / 4-3-3): #16 Maxime Crepeau -- #52 Gabriel Escobar*, #24 David Norman Jr., #26 Brendan McDonough***, #23 Scott Sutter -- #57 Matheus Queiroz**, #53 Patrick Metcalfe*, #54 Simon Colyn -- #59 Kamron Habibullah*, #60 Jefferson Alade*, #66 Georges Mukumbilwa*
* = Whitecaps academy player
** = Trialist
*** = Unsigned draft pick