Loons score three unanswered in second half comeback victory over Vancouver Whitecaps Saturday evening

By: Jacob Schneider

In thrilling comeback fashion, Minnesota United knocked off the Vancouver Whitecaps 3-1 at BC Place Saturday evening to earn their third straight win. After conceding the first goal of the match, the Loons scored three unanswered over the final 19 minutes of regulation to secure the road victory.

The win marked the Loons third straight win, but more specifically, their third straight win where they scored three goals. That marks a three-game stretch of 9/9 points secured, scoring nine goals in the process – their best form of the 2022 campaign.

“I think, first and foremost, thought it was a really good performance all evening. The sort of game plan that we planned worked really, really well. I thought some of our play in the first half was lovely to watch and had a real purpose in it. And then obviously to go a goal down on the back of the fact that [Vancouver], I think they’ve won six of the last eight, shows an enormous amount of character,” Loons head coach Adrian Heath said postgame. “But more importantly, I think it was the manner in which we went about it. We didn’t lose our shape, we kept doing what we know we are good at, kept moving the ball, and obviously some really good goals. “

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For Heath, it was an “all-in-all, really good performance on the road,” and the gaffer was thrilled with his side’s workrates, pointing out performances from Franco Fragapane and Kemar Lawrence on the left side of the pitch. The duo each found the back of the net on separate occasions, but their collaborative play over the second 45’ is what stood out to those watching at home and from the touchline.

“I think Fraga [Franco Fragapane] is now starting to get his best form this season and Luis [Amarilla] is obviously getting in games under his belt. I thought Kemar [Lawrence] again showed up…Kemar has been really ill for the last two or three days, so for him to perform is absolutely remarkable. Really pleased for him. He’s starting to show the form that he had when he was MVP, playing in both halves of the field. He’s always been a really good defender and now we’re seeing bits of quality on the attacking end.”

Lawrence opened the scoring for the Loons with a beautiful left-footed volley into the bottom corner of the net in the 71st minute, but his selection for the contest was up in the air all week.

According to Heath, Lawrence was suffering from illness all week and up until Saturday morning, there was an expectation that he would not be playing in the match. However, a turnaround Saturday morning saw Lawrence’s health improve and after a conversation with the club’s physio, Heath learned that the Jamaican would be available for selection.

The Loons doubled their lead in the 84th minute through DP Luis Amarilla, who struck the ball with his left(!!) foot from outside the box, beating Whitecaps goalkeeper Cody Cropper to the left post. The dagger came in the 88th minute from Fragapane, who made an incredibly smart run in the final third off a Dayne St. Clair clearance, dribbling past a defender and beating Cropper for the third and final goal in the comeback victory..

Arguably the most important win for them so far this season, the Loons knocked off a side who they were level on points with heading into the evening; an important Western Conference victory over a playoff contender. Now, they return home to Allianz Field for a two-match stretch before they host English Premier League side Everton FC in an international Friendly.

Courtesy MNUFC

Minnesota fought and earned, arguably, their most important three points this season Saturday evening, downing the Vancouver Whitecaps 3-1 on the road. After conceding the first goal of the match, the Loons scored three unanswered over the final 19 minutes of regulation to secure the road victory.

The win marked Minnesota’s third straight win, but more specifically, their third straight win where they scored three goals. That marks a three-game stretch of 9/9 points secured, scoring nine goals in the process – their best form of the 2022 campaign.

“I think, first and foremost, thought it was a really good performance all evening. The sort of game plan that we planned worked really, really well. I thought some of our play in the first half was lovely to watch and had a real purpose in it. And then obviously to go a goal down on the back of the fact that [Vancouver], I think they’ve won six of the last eight, shows an enormous amount of character,” Loons head coach Adrian Heath said postgame. “But more importantly, I think it was the manner in which we went about it. We didn’t lose our shape, we kept doing what we know we are good at, kept moving the ball, and obviously some really good goals. “

For Heath, it was an “all-in-all, really good performance on the road,” and the gaffer was thrilled with his side’s workrates, pointing out performances from Franco Fragapane and Kemar Lawrence on the left side of the pitch. The duo each found the back of the net on separate occasions, but their collaborative play over the second 45’ is what stood out to those watching at home and from the touchline.

“I think Fraga [Franco Fragapane] is now starting to get his best form this season and Luis [Amarilla] is obviously getting in games under his belt. I thought Kemar [Lawrence] again showed up…Kemar has been really ill for the last two or three days, so for him to perform is absolutely remarkable. Really pleased for him. He’s starting to show the form that he had when he was MVP, playing in both halves of the field. He’s always been a really good defender and now we’re seeing bits of quality on the attacking end.”

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Lawrence opened the scoring for the Loons with a beautiful left-footed volley into the bottom corner of the net in the 71st minute, but his selection for the contest was up in the air all week.

According to Heath, Lawrence was suffering from illness all week and up until Saturday morning, there was an expectation that he would not be playing in the match. However, a turnaround Saturday morning saw Lawrence’s health improve and after a conversation with the club’s physio, Heath learned that the Jamaican would be available for selection.

The Loons doubled their lead in the 84th minute through DP Luis Amarilla, who struck the ball with his left(!!) foot from outside the box, beating Whitecaps goalkeeper Cody Cropper to the left post. The dagger came in the 88th minute from Fragapane, who made an incredibly smart run in the final third off a Dayne St. Clair clearance, dribbling past a defender and beating Cropper for the third and final goal in the comeback victory..

Arguably the most important win for them so far this season, the Loons knocked off a side who they were level on points with heading into the evening; an important Western Conference victory over a playoff contender. Now, they return home to Allianz Field for a two-match stretch before they host English Premier League side Everton FC in an international Friendly.

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