Salgado scores in 'Caps reserves match

Top draft pick nets breakaway finish in draw with Chivas USA

Omar Salgado_Vancouver Whitecaps

Photo Credit: 
Joseph Armand/Vancouver Whitecaps FC

VANCOUVER, BC – Teenager Omar Salgado scored a first-half goal to lead Vancouver Whitecaps FC reserves to a 1-1 draw against Chivas USA reserves at Empire Field on Sunday.

With his mother and grandmother in the stands, Salgado showed the talent that motivated Whitecaps FC to take him first overall in the MLS SuperDraft with the young striker looking increasingly dangerous as the match moved along.

“If he keeps responding to the coaching and the criticism in the right way, he has a very bright future,” Whitecaps FC assistant coach Colin Miller said. “He took his goal well today. It was a class finish, a natural striker’s goal.”

The ‘Caps had a chance to take an early lead in the seventh minute when Mouloud Akloul got his head on a corner kick from Philippe Davies, but the French defender sent his attempt wide of goal.

Chivas then had a chance on 13 minutes when Chris Cortez rushed Joe Cannon and deflected the ball to Victor Estupinan, but the young striker couldn’t finish with an open net in front of him.

Vancouver took the lead in the 37th minute when Alex Morfaw sent Salgado in a breakaway. The young striker showed poise beyond his years, waiting patiently for Zach Thornton to close in before lofting a delicate chip past him for a 1-0 lead.

The match was nearly level again two minutes into the second half. Cortez had a header opportunity two yards from net, but Cannon came up with an incredible save, robbing him with a low dive to preserve the lead before Michael Umana sent a follow-up header wide of goal.

Salgado looked for a second on 64 minutes when he lashed onto a ball at the top of the box, but substitute goalkeeper Sergio Arias did well to save his low strike before Long Tan poked the rebound just wide of net. Salgado had another chance three minutes later, heading a Davies corner kick on target, but not troubling Arias.

The visitors came close on 80 minutes as Cortez pounced on a ball in the box and slid a shot to the far post, but Cornelius Stewart was on hand to clear it off the line. Chivas found an equalizer with three minutes remaining when Francisco Mendoza fed Cortez down the right side. Cortez then roofed a shot past Cannon to tie the match at 1-1.