Here’s what we know about Saturday night’s opponent: The Whitecaps sit atop the Western Conference with 44 points (one more than the Black & Gold) and enter this contest on a five-game unbeaten streak. Striker Fredy Montero has retuned to MLS and had a good year with 11 goal. Former Crew SC midfielder Tony Tchani has become somewhat of a fixture for Vancouver.
But there’s more to that which makes up the side.
Questions for Eighty Six Forever
Massive Report: Most Crew SC fans who don't keep up with the West may not know how the Whitecaps climbed to the top of the conference. Could you give a quick synopsis of this run that has Vancouver on top of the table?
Eighty Six Forever: This team is getting contributions from pretty much every player that crosses onto the field of play. While Montero is leading the team in scoring, it's not as simple as stopping Montero means you stop the Caps. Some would argue that Techera's resurgence (he had a down 2016) has been the catalyst. Since their last lost on 8/12, the goal scorers during this run (4-0-1): Montero x 2, Reyna x3, Shea x2, Techera, Waston, Hurtado. Assists going to: Nerwinski x2, Hurtado, Ibini x2, Davies, Montero.
MR: Fredy Montero's return to MLS has been a good one. What has made the striker so dangerous in stint number two?
ESF: Montero's job here is to score goals, with service usually coming from out wide, Montero just needs to find space. I don't know if he's changed that much, as I never followed him during his time in Seattle. I also believe that having players around him making tangible contributions has helped split the opposition's defensive targeting. I also believe the experience he brings to this team can't be properly measured.
MR: With seven games remaining in the season, how do you predict the Whitecaps season finishing up? How far could this team go in the postseason?
ESF: The Caps have 7 games remaining and I see a top 3 finish. 3 points is the difference between 1st and 4th in the West. Key matchups: at Seattle, at Portland (Decision Day), at Kansas City.
There is our insider look at the Whitecaps. To read our answers to Eighty Six Forever’s questions checkout their 3 Questions piece.