Vancouver Whitecaps

Coffee with the Caps, Monday February 26


Good Monday morning Caps fans, hope you all had a relaxing weekend and enjoyed your last Saturday without the Whitecaps for a long while.

It felt weird watching the opening weekend of MLS, knowing I had no match duties and didn’t have to concern myself with the Caps. I did a bit of recon on their opponent next week, Charlotte FC, who had a tidy 1-0 win over NYCFC and look much better drilled than they did last year. You’d hope the Caps would remain the favorites but new manager Dean Smith clearly is instilling an English level of rigor and discipline on what was a pretty motley crew.

One tidbit of Caps news that I thought deserved attention was Vanni Sartini’s comments late last week when asked about the goalkeeper position. We’ve given Joe Bednik’s arrival in Vancouver more ink than is probably necessary and Vanni sort of confirmed as much, saying that he believes Isaac Boehmer is more or less the number two.

Reading between the lines, Vanni seems to be indicating that Boehmer will be getting regular MLS Next Pro minutes, while Bednik rides the pine if anything happens to Yohei Takaoka mid-game.

I thought Takaoka was one of the most promising parts of the Tigres tie. But there is no doubt that he seemed to get ragged over the course of last year as he adjusted to the scheduling demands of MLS and the matches, with Leagues Cup and Canadian Championship, really piled up.

Vanni’s most interesting comments were that all three keepers will play and while I still don’t know that I feel comfortable with Bednik out there, I do think there is a real pathway to Boehmer getting meaningful minutes. Perhaps this is the Thomas Hasal fallacy but Boehmer has looked promising when given first team looks and you have to think the Canadian Championship will be the perfect way to let him get his feet wet again.

If that goes well and he keeps training well, I could see Boehmer being used to spell Takaoka and keep him fresh for the stretch run, when hopefully Vancouver will have lots of consequential matches for playoff purposes and when Taka’s drop off last year was most concerning.

Maybe this is overthinking what is a fairly straightforward position for the Caps. But I take Vanni at his word and don’t think it is a bad thing at all that we could be getting a little taste of Isaac Boehmer.

Shameless Self Promotion

We’ll have more season preview content to come this week but the podcast gets a head start in breaking down what is to come from the Caps this year.

Best of the Rest

Ryan Gauld was officially named the captain for the upcoming year, perhaps officially signaling that Russell Teibert’s time in Vancouver is over

A busy first week in MLS gives a lot to chew over — heroics from Messi, bad performances from the Champions Cup teams (except for the Crew), a blowout in Portland

Our thoughts with former MLS-er Alberth Elis, who had to undergo surgery and was placed in an induced coma after a serious head injury

Canada is off to a hot start at the CONCACAF W Gold Cup, with another dominant win over Paraguay on Sunday night

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