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Three things to watch for against Vancouver Whitecaps

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Last week's loss to LA Galaxy was a little disheartening, but we're back on the horse and ready for a long home stand. Here are three things to watch for tonight against Vancouver Whitecaps.

Last week, we watched for ...

How well do we defend the counter?

Um... uh... yeah, it's hard to say we defended the counter particularly badly, but there were a few too many one-on-one moments with Nick Rimando. Not that he ever makes us worry, but let's be honest, those are awful circumstances to be in.

If we take a lead, can we continue to push forward?


Who starts up top?

This one's easy: Devon Sandoval and Joao Plata. It's factual. Now, their collective performance may not have been what we needed to score, but that's what it was.

This week, let's watch for ...

Can we stop shots from streaming in?

This is something we've struggled with all season. To some extent, this happens naturally with a more attacking midfield - the balance has certainly shifted a bit from the past - but we've got to correct a little bit. They can't score if they can't shoot, the saying goes, but we sure do let them shoot.

Will John Stertzer score?

One of our more attacking players over the last two games has been John Stertzer, who's been making good runs in the box and has generally impressed. In fact, he's one of the few players who's looked likely to score, so maybe we see him start, and maybe we see him getting on the end of a sublime lob from Javier Morales. We can dream.

Will Robbie Findley play?

To this point in 2014, Robbie Findley has played 88 MLS minutes. He went 63 minutes against Chivas USA, so he's got to be close to making a full return to action. We sure could use him with Saborio's absence hurting our chances.