BY JONATHAN VERA
CARSON, Calif. – Last year the Vancouver Whitecaps finished dead last in the league without mustering an away victory all season. However, in this year’s campaign the Caps are off to a great 2-0-0 start and recorded their first away win in MLS play, beating Chivas USA, 1-0, at the Home Depot Center on Saturday night.
Veteran defender Jay DeMerit scored his first goal as a Whitecap to provide the difference and give Vancouver its first MLS road victory. DeMerit goal came off a corner kick after muscling his way into the six past the Chivas defenders for the diving header.
“Tonight was a night of firsts," DeMerit said. "We came in with a plan and on the road sometimes that’s what it takes."
“It’s a huge monkey off our backs,” said DeMerit. “A lots been said about that in our preseason up to this first away game and to get it out of the way right away is such a good thing for us. We don’t have that pressure anymore. Now we can just go away from home and try to keep clean sheets and wins.”
“It’s nice to win a game, and it obviously nice to win on the road,” said Vancouver head coach Martin Rennie. “This has a lot of significance for us tonight because in the past in the MLS the Whitecaps haven’t won on the road.”
Chivas USA fell to 0-2 on the season, with a second-straight shutout loss at home. The offense struggled mightily without Juan Pablo Angel, sidelined with concussion-like symptoms. Though shots were recorded, the creativity and leadership was lacking.
Vancouver goalkeeper Joe Cannon left the match in the 41st minute with an injury, forcing back-up Brad Knighton to step in and preserve the shutout. Rennie stated Cannon's injury was not serious, and only a muscle bruise.
What did you think of the match? Starting to believe the Whitecaps are for real? Think Chivas USA is the worst team in MLS?
Share your thoughts below.