Vancouver, BC – Vancouver Whitecaps FC will be out to exact a little revenge on Wednesday as the club welcomes lowly Chivas USA to BC Place.
Chivas USA's last victory came against the Whitecaps in a 2-1 win in Carson, Calif., on March 30. It's been all downhill for the Rojiblancos since.
The Goats enter the contest winless in their last eight league games, suffering defeat in each of their last five matches. That poor run has left the club at the foot of the Western Conference table with just 11 points claimed from its 13 games.
Sacha van der Most assumed control of the Chivas managerial duties on a caretaker basis following the sacking of Jose Luiz Sanchez Sola and promptly went away from his predecessor's favored 3-5-2 formation against Seattle Sounders FC on June 1, a match that the Goats lost, 2-1.
"We went from a 3-5-2 the team used to play to a 4-3-3 and defensively a 4-5-1 in just two days," said van der Most. "The team and the players wanted to play the system but we didn't have enough effort in the midfield."
Jose Luis Real will now take charge, and the plan for the club's tactics remains something of a mystery.
"We haven't gotten into too much detail yet, but every coach brings his own concepts," said midfielder Gabriel Farfan. "It's just a matter of us applying them and learning them as fast as we can."
Vancouver has fared much better than Chivas this season, but the 'Caps still sit outside the playoff picture through 14 games. Sitting one point adrift of a playoff spot with 19 points on the campaign, Vancouver can strengthen its bid for a postseason berth by building upon its last outing.
The Whitecaps defeated the New England Revolution, 4-3, at BC Place at the weekend to improve to 3-1-1 in their last five league games. Goals have been plentiful over that stretch as the 'Caps have scored 13 and conceded 10.
"It can't be good for my health, watching these games ... right now we just seem to be doing things the hard way," said Whitecaps head coach Martin Rennie. "But right now we are winning, we're moving forward and hopefully we'll get to the point where things are done a little more easily."
Kenny Miller has been one of the stars of Vancouver's positive form, bagging three goals in his last three games. His brace against the Revs was his first since making the move to MLS last season.
"His overall performance was really top class. It made a big difference to our team tonight," Rennie said after the match. "And like I say, not just the goals but his desire and hunger and work rate when we were losing, when we weren't doing well, that started to rub off on other people."