The Vancouver Whitecaps will welcome the Revolution north of the border

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The New England Revolution are coming off of a busy, yet successful week. Now, with COVID’s effects on sport starting to fade into the background, cross-conference games are returning to the league. The Revolution will travel north of the border this weekend to face the Vancouver Whitecaps.

Both sides are playing well currently and so it promises to be a fascinating encounter.

New England Will Face the Vancouver Whitecaps for the First Time Since 2019

The Vancouver Whitecaps are on the Up!

Barring an overwhelming defeat at the hands of Seattle, the Vancouver Whitecaps have performed well recently. Five of the last six games have gone their way. Two of which came in the Canadian Championship as they have continued their route to the final. It took a penalty shootout for them to overcome Cavalry in the quarters before a Brian White brace trumped York United, making four become two.

Focusing on league play and the Vancouver Whitecaps have been defensively sound on this stretch. It took an Aaron Herrera red at the death and a subsequent penalty conversion from Scotsman Ryan Gauld to overcome RSL. In the other two wins, they shut-out Sporting Kansas City and FC Dallas with Lucas Cavallini finding the back of the net in both.

Now moving on to the visitors and they themselves are enjoying a rich vein of form. In their last eight MLS outings, the Revolution are undefeated. This run has seem them win four and draw the other four, the only negative part of this run being the Open Cup exit at the hands of NYCFC. Since losing to DC in late April, there have been some strong results for New England, even when the performances have fallen by the wayside.

In June, an aforementioned convoluted seven days may have seen the Revolution concede in all three games, but they still managed seven points. Ema Boateng won it late in Kansas City before attacking trio Carles Gil, Dylan Borrero and Gustavo Bou all scored across the Orlando and Minnesota fixtures.

The History of This Fixture

As previously mentioned, the Vancouver Whitecaps haven’t met New England since 2019 as a result of the pandemic. This therefore will be a rare trip to Canada and a good one from the point of view of midfielder Tommy McNamara: “It’s enjoyable to play the teams from the Western Conference just to get a different look, to go travel around the country.” In terms of this specific destination: “Vancouver is a long travel but I enjoy the city of Vancouver.”

The last meeting between the two was a huge 4-0 win at Gillette Stadium for the Revs and they have lost just two of the last 10. At BC Place in particular, it has been an even match with a win each as well as a tie. The Vancouver Whitecaps won 4-3 in 2013, then New England won 2-1 in 2016 before there was a 3-3 draw in which Christian Techera scored a hat-trick for the Canadians.

In the words of coach Arena, “The guys up front are good players… their striker [Lucas Cavallini] is very good, the guys in the midfield [Cristian Dájome, Deiber Caicedo, Ryan Gauld] as their attacking midfield, those are good players. Their backline is experienced. We know Cody Cropper, he was here in New England, their goalkeeper. But a good, solid team. They play well at home. Playing in Vancouver is never easy, so it’s really going to be challenging.”

Tommy McNamara is Like a Swiss Army Knife

Tommy McNamara can operate in a number of different positions, something which was highlighted by Bruce: “He’s a versatile player. He can play any of the positions in the midfield and has, so he’s a real asset for us.” McNamara himself made a point of this; “I’m obviously versatile throughout my whole career. I’ve played in different ways, been asked to do different things.”

With the Vancouver Whitecaps clash on the horizon, the 31-year-old from New York said the following, “I think in a couple cases, we kind of dropped points from a winning position to a tie. But then on the flip side, you look at a game like this past weekend. We didn’t really play our best and we were still able to come away with three points.”

Once again, it will be a Sunday game for the Revolution. A trip to BC Place beckons and with a positive result, the Vancouver Whitecaps could sneak above the playoff line. Who will prevail north of the border?

Click here to read Matt Turner’s final words before departing for Arsenal.