‘Caps Advance to Concacaf Champions League quarterfinals

Florian Jungwirth Announces Retirement, Named VWFC Assistant Coach

March 15, 2023 – Major League Soccer (MLS)Vancouver Whitecaps FC News Release

SAN PEDRO SULA, HONDURAS – Vancouver Whitecaps FC progressed to the Concacaf Champions League quarterfinals despite falling 3-2 against Real CD España on Wednesday night at the Estadio Olímpico Metropolitano in San Pedro Sula, Honduras, claiming a commanding 7-3 aggregate victory across two legs.

‘Caps goalkeeper Thomas Hasal was called into action early on, as he dove to his left to prevent España defender Mayron Flores’ headed effort from finding the bottom corner in the fourth minute.

Just four minutes later, the ‘Caps came close to opening the scoring. Cristian Dájome nutmegged an España defender and played Pedro Vite in on goal, who created an angle for himself to shoot but rattled his curling strike off the post, keeping the match scoreless.

The ‘Caps would get the next big chance of the match in the 23rd minute, as Vite’s deflected free kick found its way into the path of Sergio Córdova. The Venezuelan directed the ball towards goal but it was cleared off the line by Flores and bounced off Ali Ahmed’s knee just wide of the España goal.

Hasal made another crucial save a minute later, once again denying España from finding a goal by saving Getsel Montes’ headed attempt.

Right before the halftime interval, España forward José Reyes unleashed a powerful strike inside the box towards the far post, but Hasal once again came up with the save to keep the home side off the scoreboard.

Fast forward to the 66th minute, the ‘Caps would grab the opening goal of the match. Javain Brown won the ball in the final third and squared it to Brian White at the top of the box, who fired in his second Champions League goal of the season to give Vancouver the 1-0 lead. The goal gave the ‘Caps a 6-0 aggregate lead in the tie.

A minute later, España found an equalizer as Montes found a loose ball in the area and put it in the net to tie the match at 1-1.

Shortly after, Jhow Benavídez played an España corner kick to the back post, with substitute Ramiro Rocca bringing the ball down and powering his shot into the top corner past Hasal to give the home side the lead in the match. However, the ‘Caps continued to lead the aggregate score by a combined score of 6-2.

In the 83rd minute, Sebastian Berhalter played a ball over the top of the España defence to Simon Becher, who dribbled past a defender, carried the ball into the box and unleashed an effort to the near post past España…

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