Chivas USA-Whitecaps FC Preview

Chivas USA-Whitecaps FC Preview

Published Aug. 31, 2013 5:19 p.m. ET

After failing to score in back-to-back losses, the Vancouver Whitecaps are surely looking forward to facing defensively challenged Chivas USA.

Getting Camilo back would surely help, too.

Vancouver is hoping to have its leading goal scorer available Sunday as it aims for a third consecutive home win in the series.

The Whitecaps (10-9-6) followed a 5-0-1 stretch by going 1-4-1 in their last six matches, including a pair of ugly efforts over the previous two weekends. After falling 2-0 at Colorado on Aug. 17, Vancouver was shut out again last Saturday in a 1-0 defeat to Los Angeles.


Camilo, who entered that game with an MLS best-tying 14 goals, saw his streak of 17 consecutive starts in league play snapped due to a strained groin suffered against the Rapids.

"So that was disappointing," coach Martin Rennie said. "And, obviously, in a game like that today that was really tight, a player like Camilo is someone who could make a difference and could perhaps get us a goal."

While the 25-year-old was limited in practice for a second consecutive week, the team is hoping he will be good to go come Sunday.

"He's scored a lot of goals for us this season," midfielder Russell Teibert said. "He's a real attacking threat, and I think other teams are really worried about him, so it will be great to have him back."

With or without Camilo, the Whitecaps could have an edge over last-place Chivas USA (5-14-6), whose 21 points rank second-fewest in MLS.

While Vancouver suffered its only loss in the series with a 2-1 defeat at Chivas on March 30, it has posted back-to-back home wins by a 7-1 margin. Camilo scored twice and assisted on Jordan Harvey's goal as the Whitecaps took the last matchup 3-1 on June 19.

Despite last month's struggles, the Whitecaps are still very much alive with 36 points.

"Sunday is a very important game for our club," Camilo said. "I think we have to win this game if we're going to go up in the table."

Chivas, which has allowed a Western Conference-high 45 goals, had been limited to 11 during a 1-13-5 stretch in league play before beating New York 3-2 last Sunday. Julio Morales gave the club a 1-0 lead in the 30th minute before Erick Torres scored his team-leading third and fourth goals.

"For me, this was our best game of the season," coach Jose Luis Real said. "I've only been here for half of the season, but this is definitely the best game Chivas has played since I've been here."

A second consecutive victory could be hard to come by on the road, where Chivas has been outscored 21-4 during an 0-8-2 stretch in league play. That winless drought away from home is Chivas' longest since a 14-game stretch during its inaugural 2005 season.

The Whitecaps will be without midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker, who was suspended for caution accumulation.