Saturday, September 28th, 2019 | Trillium Turf West
Westside Strikers

Vancouver Greencaps A

  • P. Fitzgerald (55')
1 2
Westside Strikers

Westside Strikers

  • K. Hildebrandt (14')
  • A. De Jong (20')
Match Report, VMSL 1st Division

This isn’t meant to be a gossip column

This isn’t meant to be a gossip column, but you know what, we’re going there…right off the bat.

Apparently this summer treated some Strikers better than Anthony Pezzente. This seems truly unthinkable considering Pezzente emerged from a darker corner than Jamie Vardy to become the summer team’s version of David Seaman (equal in current body type, unequal in hair, forever—god bless the pony tail-moustache combo). Again, who had it better than Anthony? If you’ve been trawling the floors of the Beaumont at 4am in search of the mystical Night Rangers and the brilliantly unique scent of their leader, you may have stumbled across quiet whisperings about proposals, rings, beautiful destinations, and some intriguing names. But, alas, this is all just conjecture. None of this has been confirmed by team officials at Silver Spoon headquarters. And, we all know the Night Rangers don’t really exist…

But, on serious note: can someone answer Jordan Cooper’s question for fuck’s sake?
On to the mailbag. You know how this goes: I answer questions from REAL people and you gain knowledge you never thought was possible.
Let’s go!
Have you seen a more potent duo than Da Cruz and Lytton? ~ Melinda R. at a Blenz in Pitt Meadows
 It’s hard to argue with seven goals in four games. I’m going to refrain discussing the fact six of those were scored against a team headed for relegation. Clinical. Electric. Destructive. Human (Da Cruz within 13 feet on a breakaway and any time Gavin releases a hysterical laugh on the pitch). Melinda, you ask a tough question, and although I can come up with several combos that may be more potent, only one bears mentioning: Skrillex and Bieber. This video says it all: lensless glasses, hoverboards, inauthentic sensitivity and the incorporation of a third dude for absolutely no good reason. These guys ooze an inclusive flair that Richard Dobie has been yearning to feel, see, and touch from Da Cruz and Lytton for years. Da Cruz and Lytton: brilliant? Yes. Iconic? Not quite.
What makes this duo so attractive (besides the obvious) is their Ying and Yangness. Gavin is obsessive. His pre-game ritual involves visualizing piercing runs, electric goals, and the public adulation that follows greatness. Da Cruz is like placid water, unflappable and up to a lot under the surface. Prior to games, he’s probably lost in the nuances of crypto currency or quantum theory. I mean it is likely that he was trying to source the game location at 3:11pm on Saturday (team sources have since confirmed this).
Da Cruz and Lytton: ferocity and flow.
Which Allester will play in more games this year? ~ Tyreke L. at Movement 108, overhearing Aaron De Jong say “so hot” three times in the same breath
 I believe what you’re really asking is who is more beautiful, Stu or Jamie?
Well, were you a Monica or Rachel fan on Friends? That’s what this comes down to.
Stu: strong, virile and somewhat dated. These days he’s like a lion after a big meal, he needs a minute. However, I once saw him transform nakedness, popcorn, and a hot tub into an act of service for others. He’s the full package.
Jamie: silky, smooth, and always leaving you wanting more.Those are three tantalizing characteristics. But, as my romantic career demonstrates, for the tease to continue to drive that desire, you need to show up from time to time. He’s high risk and high reward.
All that to say, you can’t go wrong with either. Yes, I’m playing the middle here. But, guess what, it’s my column, Tyreke.
Jamie makes the match card nine times this year. Stu, five.
How good was my sticker video? ~ Ricky D. from a Mazda 3, while on an non-sanctioned break at UBC
 This wasn’t supposed to make the mailbag.
What was your take on this week’s performance? And, how weak was Kyle? ~ Bryan A. drinking affluent beer from a fake work event at an undisclosed location in Vancouver
Considering the infirmary has been piling up bodies and Bryan Archibald made some questionable decisions, this week’s performance was tremendous. Depth is crucial over a six-month season and the Strikers needed it more than ever on the weekend. The team was sub-less midway through the second half, but they pulled their pants up and held the line after losing two of their strongest pieces due to in-game injury.
The Strikers came out wobbly—playing soft, scared, and soft (I really wanted the alliteration). The Greencaps were pressing them all over the field for the first 20 minutes. This lack of confidence and poise had me worried. Yet, they managed to absorb the pressure and shake their cobwebs (a theme for the entire match) while not conceding a goal. And then they struck with a fantastic counter attack, as ADJ capped off some brilliance from Gavin to put the Strikers up a goal, much to the astonishment and dismay of their opponents. 10 minutes later, they hit the replay button and had another ball ripple the mesh to put them up 2-0. Usually you’re only able to grab one sneaky drink with your friends at the pub. The Strikers managed two. They knew they were lucky. But, as goals tend to do, the squad was inspired with a renewed sense of confidence; something that they would lean on the rest of the way.
Shortly after the second goal, Arved the Majestic was knocked out of the game after being on the receiving end of a head to head collision. Later, microphones caught him telling teammates he would be fine. At the same time, television cameras caught Dave Whitaker walking around with an erection. Before half time, the proverbial snake continued biting the Strikers as Dave McConville strained his quad significantly. The injury left him incapable of kicking the ball. The fans grew increasingly scared. What would the second half have in store? After the break, McConville made it another 25 minutes before he had to take himself out. Aaron de Jong, strapped the gloves on and quickly eliminated any conversation about Man of the Match by owning his space and serving as another defender in the back with his amount of talk. The second half saw the Strikers record 51.5 seconds of possession in the Greencaps half, witness 45 minutes of Joe Brooker running aimlessly, and earn a valuable 3 points via a gutsy 2-1 win. It was a great performance all around–from McConville gutting it out as long as he could to Paul acting as a maestro in the back to Baris giving it all to the point of exhaustion, and finally to Bryan da Cruz being everywhere on the field (please take note, Joe–one can move and make an impact at the same time).
Let’s talk about Brooker for a moment, shall we. Not since I pulled the “old fake stick fetch game” with my neighbour’s dog have I witnessed a being look so excited and lost all at once as what I witnessed from Joe Brooker this weekend. And, much like the fake stick game, onlookers were left feeling entertained, hollow and a little bit ashamed for watching. There was da Cruz and then there was Brooker. One knew where the real stick was. Here’s hoping Brooker figures his life out.
And, Bryan: Kyle was fantastic.
Who will return to the field first, Conor or Dobie? – James M. screaming outside Dobie’s window
This is a great question. One has a torn ACL, the other has “ankle issues.” It’s hard to say who will come back first, but what we know for sure is that you can recover from ruptured knee ligaments; however, there is no treatment for softness.
Which Striker would look best with a pony tail and moustache? ~ Ricardo A. in the 239
Current top five:
  1. ADJ
  2. Dobie
  3. Baris
  4. Viveiros
  5. Cooper (you know he’s pulling this look off, too)
Quotes of the Week
“WHAT IF I HAVEN’T DECIDED YET?!?!” – Dave McConville after being told by the referee to leave the field if he was injured.
“Nate, tell me about the Night Rangers.” – Bryan Archibald with serious interest