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rkko Nieminen in
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The Vancouver Whitecaps ended their four-game scoring drought on Wednesday night at BC Place, where they defeated the struggling San Jose Earthquakes by a score of 2-0. The Whitecaps got goals from Pedro Morales, who converted a penalty kick in the first half, and Kendall Waston, who scored a diving header from a Morales corner kick in the second half to secure the three points. THE FORMATIONS For the second game running, Vancouver lined up in a 4-4-2 formation with a diamond midfield. Head coach Carl Robinson made two changes to the line-up that drew 0-0 with DC United on Saturday - Erik Hurtado replaced Darren Mattocks in attack and Steven Beitashour replaced Ethen Sampson at right-back. The Earthquakes made one change to the team that drew 3-3 with the Portland Timbers on the weekend, with J.J. Koval replacing Jean-Baptiste Pierazzi in midfield in head coach Mark Watsons 4-4-1-1 formation. THE GAME Vancouver dictated the tempo of the game for large stretches, as San Jose offered very little going forward. The Earthquakes seemed content to get as many as 10 players behind the ball in order to frustrate the Whitecaps with only Chris Wondolowski remaining in an advanced position. For much of the first half, this tactic worked for San Jose. Vancouver was unable to break down the Earthquakes, despite enjoying the lions share of possession and camping out in the Earthquakes half. Whenever Vancouver did manage to find a way to goal, San Jose had Jon Busch in place to bail them out with a save. One could sense the tension creeping into the crowd at BC Place as Vancouvers struggles in front of goal continued in the first half. So when the referee pointed to the penalty spot in the 39th minute after Waston had been shoved in the back by Victor Bernardez, a palpable sense of relief washed over the home crowd. While it was a soft penalty to concede, Pedro Morales made no mistake from the spot, side-footing into the bottom left corner beyond the reach of Busch. Waston powered home the second Whitecaps goal in the 56th minute, diving to head home a Morales corner kick. Waston has already shown in his short time in Vancouver that he is a real threat from set pieces. If the delivery from Morales and Mauro Rosales remains consistent, expect Waston to find the back of the net on a frequent basis for the Whitecaps. Aside from the two goals, there was much for Robinson to be pleased with on Wednesday night. The midfield diamond formation worked very well against San Jose. Ive written recently about the difficulty of finding a role for Russell Teibert in Vancouvers 4-2-3-1 formation, but he was excellent on the left side of the diamond midfield. He covered an incredible distance as he protected the back four and his use of the ball was very good. Perhaps this formation is the key to maximizing Teiberts abilities; where he isnt required to beat defenders 1-on-1, and can instead come inside to link with Laba and Morales, freeing up space for Jordan Harvey to come forward from the full-back position. Harvey had a field day for the Whitecaps on the left, and put in another solid performance. He was always an option to switch the point of attack, and when he received the ball he kept Vancouver in possession. The front two of Sebastien Fernandez and Hurtado worked hard all night, and Fernandez, in particular, linked very well with Morales and Rosales. Hurtado had a glorious chance to make it 3-0 for Vancouver, but he snatched at his breakaway and fired wide of the net when he had more than enough time to settle himself and beat Busch in goal. The miss simply underlined what Robinson has known for quite some time: If Vancouver is going to compete with the best teams in the Western Conference on a yearly basis, they need a striker of Moraless caliber leading the line. THE GOOD The midfield diamond worked very well for Vancouver, and given the personnel that Robinson has at his disposal just now, it may be the formation that sees the Whitecaps through the rest of the season and into the playoffs. It was an excellent all-around performance from Vancouver with David Ousted and the back four looking solid all evening. Waston was immense and he is quickly building a strong partnership with Andy OBrien. It was Ousteds ninth clean sheet of the season – the most in Major League Soccer. THE BAD San Jose offered very little to the game aside from a commitment to defend in numbers. Once the first Vancouver goal went in and San Jose had to come out of their shell, they were unable to live with the Whitecaps. Their league position, second from bottom in the Western Conference, is an accurate reflection of their ability. If they do not strengthen in the offseason, San Jose will be in danger of missing out on the playoffs next year as well. THE STAR MAN Waston was fantastic for the Whitecaps, as was Teibert, but Morales was again at the heart of everything that Vancouver did offensively. When Morales plays well, so, too, do the Whitecaps. The victory put Vancouver into the playoff picture in fifth place in the Western Conference, two points ahead of the Portland Timbers. Up next for the Whitecaps is a trip to Texas on Saturday to take on FC Dallas (You can catch the action live on TSN 2 at 8:30pm et/5:30pm pt). Sead Kolasinac Arsenal Jersey . The Flames are in the midst of a six-game slide (0-5-1), their longest losing streak since an 0-6-3 skid from Jan. 11-28, 2010. They havent won since Nov. 3 in Chicago and most recently went winless on a three-game homestand. Mesut Ozil Arsenal Jersey . -- Los Angeles Angels outfielder Josh Hamilton will be sidelined for at least two weeks because of a strained calf muscle, and pitcher C. http://www.footballarsenalstore.com/Wome...Fc-Jersey/ .Chanathip Songkrasin opened the scoring in the sixth minute before Kroekrit found the target twice in the 57th and four minutes from fulltime.Vietnam and Malaysia play their second leg on Thursday. Vietnam won the first leg 2-1. Mohamed Elneny Jersey .Y. -- That hangover from the Big East tournament is gone for Villanova. Mesut Ozil Jersey . But history aside, theyre still happy to participate in the Par 3 contest, traditionally held on the day prior to the first round of the Masters.MELBOURNE, Australia - Defending champion Stan Wawrinka used service breaks to clinch all three sets on his way to a 6-4, 6-2, 6-4 win over Jarkko Nieminen in a third-round match Saturday at the Australian Open.Warwinka won his first career Grand Slam singles title last year at Melbourne Park, beating Rafael Nadal in tthe final.dddddddddddd Later in the year, he and Roger Federer led Switzerland to its first Davis Cup triumph.Nieminen hadnt advanced to the third round here since a quarterfinal appearance in 2008.In the fourth round, Warwinka will play either Guillermo Garcia-Lopez of Spain or Canadas Vasek Pospisil ' ' '
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