The Vancouver Whitecaps will be without their two big offseason acquisitions -- Yordy Reyna
and Fredy Montero
-- when they open play Wednesday against the New York Red Bulls
in the Concacaf Champions League. But they aren't the only injury concerns on the eve of the 2017 MLS season. Opening day
... Projected XI --
Ousted; Nerwinski, Waston, Parker, Harvey; Laba, Teibert; Davies, Barnes, Manneh; Hurtado.
Reyna, who was acquired from Austria's Red Bull
Salzburg, was hurt in the final minutes of the Whitecaps' final preseason game at the Portland Tournament, while Montero, who is on loan from Chinese club Tianjin Teda missed preseason.
To make matters worse, midfielders Nicolas Mezquida
and Christian Bolanos
are both injured and unavailable for the first leg of the CCL quarterfinals at Red Bull Arena.
“It’s not going to be won in the first leg," said Vancouver coach Carl Robinson
, "but it can certainly be lost in the first leg. We have to make sure that they’re right and
drilled into what we want to do. We’ve got a number of injuries. There’s a few key personnel missing, so whatever team goes out and steps on the field will have a role and responsibility
to do and we’ll be prepared."
The one newcomer in the lineup will be at right back, where draft pick Jake Nerwinski
(UConn) and former Philadelphia and Houston defender
are fighting for the starting job. Who's in ... GOALKEEPERS:
Spencer Richey (Whitecaps FC
2, USL Signing). DEFENDERS:
Jake Nerwinski (Univ. of Connecticut, SuperDraft), Sheanon Williams (Houston Dynamo, Trade). MIDFIELDERS:
Yordy Reyna (Red Bull Salzburg/AUT, Transfer).
Kyle Greig (Whitecaps FC 2, USL Signing), Fredy Montero (Tianjin Teda/CHN, Loan). Who's out ...
: Marco Carducci. DEFENDERS:
Sam Adekugbe (Brighton & Hove Albion/ENG, Loan), Fraser Aird (Rangers/SCO, Loan Expired), Jordan Smith (Saprissa/CRC, Loan Expired).
Kianz Froese (Fortuna Duesseldorf/GER, Transfer), Pedro Morales (Colo-Colo/CHL, Free Agent). FORWARDS:
Masato Kudo (Sanfrecce Hiroshima/JPN, Transfer), Blas Perez (Arabe
Unido/PAN, Free Agent). First five games ... Feb. 22 --
at New York Red Bulls (Concacaf Champions League).
March 2 --
New York Red Bulls (Concacaf Champions League). March 5 --
Philadelphia Union March 11 --
at San Jose Earthquakes March 18 --