Episode 571 – The AFTN Soccer Show (Isn’t It Funny How It Always Happens – Canada’s Gold Cup heartbreak, Whitecaps derby day disappointment, Vancouver FC midway mark)

Episode 571 – The AFTN Soccer Show (Isn’t It Funny How It Always Happens – Canada’s Gold Cup heartbreak, Whitecaps derby day disappointment, Vancouver FC midway mark)

We’re back with another packed show of Vancouver Whitecaps, Major League Soccer, Vancouver FC, Canadian Premier League, and Canadian national team chat, and Felipe Vallejo joins us to talk about it all.

It was penalty shootout heartbreak for Canada in their Gold Cup quarter-final against the US at the weekend. We look back at the highs and lows of both the match and the tournament and ponder whether Canada has actually taken a step back in terms of their recent growth.

Turning our attention to the Whitecaps, it was a disappointing derby day defeat at the hands of Seattle Sounders on Saturday night. We delve into the match, the main talking points coming out of the game, and where it all leaves the ‘Caps now with two almost must win home games coming up this week against two in-form teams.

Vancouver FC are at the midway point of their inaugural CPL season, sitting bottom of the standings but just three points off the playoff places. We look back at the season so far, what’s needed for the second half of their season, and get the thoughts of head coach Afshin Ghotbi. We also look at the rest of the CPL so far this year and hear from Pacific head coach James Merriman and Forge head coach Bobby Smyrniotis about what they’ve made of their teams.

Here’s the rundown for the main segments from the episode:

01.28: Intro
04.20: Canada’s Gold Cup shootout heartbreak against the US
39.00: Whitecaps derby day disappointment against Sounders
82.57: Vancouver FC – a midseason review
118.02: James Merriman gets new contract and Pacific FC chat
126.15: Rest of the CPL season so far
138.10: Wavelength – Keshco – Penalty Shot

You can download and/or listen to this, and all previous, episodes of the podcast on the following services:

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Or after all that, you could just listen on the player below!

Authored by: Michael McColl

There is 1 comment for this article
  1. Ryan Burns at 13:13

    Per the discussion on the crowd Saturday night, I believe there’s a compounding effect that is often the case come July and August as you discussed with a variety of other events and activities happening in what is fairly stellar weather. The Lions are affected in the same way, though there’s a mitigating buzz around that team currently that’s also a mere five games into it’s season, not past the halfway point as the ‘Caps are. That early-season excitement is still there.

    Suggest there’s another element that’s at play this ‘Caps season that hasn’t been there to the extent it is in ’23 that’s also a compounding effect: Attendance / interest has been steadily declining for at least four seasons now (inclusive of this one) and this season it’s at a dangerously low level. Hitting July and August with what is already a low ebb of interest and attendance it should not be a surprise that a Cascadia derby saw ~13/14K show up on an otherwise busy event Saturday. What we’re seeing is a culmination of seasons of little to make the ‘Caps a priority, and while agreed that the current FO has made some fair efforts to improve the situation in large part the damage has been done and isn’t reversible with as many draws as wins at home in the first half-ish of the season. And, in my opinion, it hasn’t always been “entertaining.” Add in other elements we’re all aware of (Apple+ streaming, really poor away form & efforts, still lingering mistrust / apathy toward the franchise) and as I referred to it as, a compounding effect that’s worse than seasons prior.

    Personally, I was at the Vancouver Craft Beer Week event in the afternoon. And then at the match for kickoff. The former ran 2-7 pm, entirely possible to do both as an example if one cared to. Many used to; now, far fewer do.

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