Yes, sometimes it happens Whitecaps FC fans. Mistakes happen. Costly mistakes happen. On Saturday afternoon the Whitecaps were victims of their own mistakes. Mistakes that could have been avoided and that would have kept their playoffs hopes alive.
A loss with such devastating consequences makes it hard not to look for those who we feel are accountable. When making such an analysis, it is easy to label Carlyle Mitchell as a scapegoat, or as being directly responsible for two of three goals that the Whitecaps allowed in Colorado. He was called for a penalty and, while it could be argued that it was a harsh call, it cannot be denied that it was a foul inside the box. Yes, I hear you. Those kinds of plays happen in abundance in every game, in every league in the world, and they mostly do not get called. But unfortunately for Carlyle, the Whitecaps and the Vancouver fans, this one did. After that, he missed what looked like a routine clearing header. It was one of those balls in the air that Vancouver fans are accustomed to seeing him dominate. And yet, he missed it. Yes, these things happen from time to time. What is the difference? This time they couldn’t afford it to happen.
So, while there is merit in the argument that Carlyle Mitchell cost the Whitecaps the game, very few are talking about how Y.P. Lee got beaten with ease by a raging Deshorn Brown time and time again, how David Ousted was not where he was supposed to be on the second goal, or how much room Jordan Harvey allowed (yet again) on the third goal.
Perhaps the most frustrating part is that while the Whitecaps once again fell on the road, this time they did it for different reasons than they have previously. This time they came out and they actually tried to win the game. Heck, at some point they were winning the game. Perhaps not as convincingly as their previous outing in Seattle but it wasn’t the horrendous showing that they usually put up away from BC Place.
Yes, the defensive mistakes cost the Whitecaps the game. But the season? No. The season was lost at BC Place in games against Philadelphia, Chivas and LA. The season has been done since July 20 when they started a run that saw them win three of the last thirteen.
So things and mistakes can happen at any given game. But a season is not over as the result of one game and, whether we like it or not, the season is over. We get one more chance to see the boys at BC Place and then we are all on for a long four month wait until next season. A four month wait that will give us plenty of time to think, discuss, write, banter, tweet and examine the season that was and the season that will be.
And by God we will.
Be sure to check out Jorge’s new WhitecapsFC podcast From The Back Line!