VANCOUVER — Vanni Sartini set free a sigh as he started his post-match press convention.
The Vancouver Whitecaps head coach had simply seen his group lose 5-3 on penalties in opposition to Mexican facet Tigres UANL within the Leagues Cup competitors.
The shootout loss, which adopted a 1-1 attract regulation time, marked Vancouver’s elimination from the tourney.
“We deserved to win. It’s a steal,” Sartini mentioned after the match.
Pedro Vite opened the scoring for the Whitecaps, firing a half volley previous a stranded Nahuel Guzman within the tenth minute after Ryan Gauld’s meant cross to Brian White was deflected to the Ecuadorean.
The Whitecaps held on to the lead till the second half when French striker Andre-Pierre Gignac struck again.
Javier Aquino clipped a cross in from Vancouver’s left facet, discovering an unmarked Gignac who linked on a bicycle kick to even the rating within the 53rd minute.
However the aim was criticized by Sartini, who felt the Frenchman fouled a Whitecaps participant within the lead up.
“As a result of it’s Andre-Pierre Gignac, and Tigres have extra followers than us, then all people is comfortable they win. Perhaps the league is extra comfortable in the event that they win,” he mentioned.
Ranko Veselinovic missed his shot for Vancouver within the penalty shootout condemning them to defeat.
However the Whitecaps had a number of possibilities to win the sport earlier than the shootout, with Ryan Raposo glancing a header huge and striker Brian White lacking an opportunity from six yards out.
“I’m pleased with all the group,” mentioned Sartini.
Sartini singled out Canadian wingback Raposo’s efficiency within the tight match.
The reward comes after every week the place the Whitecaps signed two distinguished wingbacks within the type of Richie Laryea and Sam Adekugbe.
Adekugbe agreed to a Main League Soccer contract by means of 2026 with a membership possibility for 2027, the group mentioned in a launch.
Adekugbe, who has performed for a number of European groups throughout his profession and made three appearances for Canada finally 12 months’s World Cup in Qatar, can be added to the roster pending a medical.
Laryea in the meantime joined on mortgage to the top of the 12 months from English Premier League facet Nottingham Forest.
He had spent a part of the season on mortgage to Toronto FC earlier than signing with the Whitecaps.
The signings imply there can be extra competitors for sport time for Raposo and fellow defenders Luis Martins and Matthias Laborda.
“We’re paying good cash for these guys, they’re not coming to sit down on the bench,” mentioned Raposo about the potential for feeling stress by the brand new signings. “It’s my job to struggle for my spot on this group and have performances like right this moment.”
The Leagues Cup options matches between golf equipment from Main League Soccer and Mexico’s Liga MX.
Vancouver beforehand tied present Leagues Cup holders Membership Leon and beat MLS foes L.A. Galaxy.
Tigres will play Mexican facet Monterrey on Tuesday after they beat Portland FC 1-0 on Friday. . . . Vancouver will return to MLS motion on Aug. 20.