Whitecaps Forced to Borrow Fans Shirts


This one is too good not to bring you. Vancouver Whitecaps have been accused of being so obsessed with commercial success that they have been lapse in other aspects.

Disgruntled fans have gone so far as to claim that the Front Office would take the shirts of their backs given half the chance.

Now they have been proven right.

For reasons yet unknown, not all of the Whitecaps equipment arrived in San Jose on Wednesday night.

Eric Hassli, Mustapha Jarju, Davide Chiumiento and Jeb Brovsky shirts were missing and Joe Cannon’s goalkeeping jersey was also not at the Buck Shaw stadium for kick off.

The Whitecaps had a problem. They used some incredibly quick thinking though. They approached the traveling band of Caps fans and asked for theirs.

Now, this plan had some flaws as Michael McColl reported on his Away from the Numbers blog where the story first broke.

“We believe only two of them might have been used during the actual game, as some of the fans have, let’s just say, slightly bigger physiques.”

This is Canadian for 50% of all Whitecaps fans are slightly larger than life characters.

Unlike previous interactions with their hardest core supporters, fans who were there report that the Caps staff were fantastically good natured and good humoured about the whole episode.

One fan who was there told McColl:

“The guys thought it was a joke at first when the two Caps officials came and asked them for the shirts of their back. We had a laugh about what else could go wrong this season, but fair play to the Club, they were very grateful and appreciative of what the guys did to help them out and it was nice to see the gesture of thanks they gave them in return.”

But what about Cannon? Who had a goalkeeper’s jersey to lend him? Nobody did, but the club showed their ability to think quickly one more time. A generic green training jersey was acquired but there was one thing missing. The sponsor’s logo.

Once more Vancouver Whitecaps staff showed their initiative. They drew it on by hand.

The outfielder jerseys loaned will apparently be returned to the helpful fans and the good news is that the Caps battled back from being behind twice to save a draw.

Now if only they could show the same ‘drawing power’ when they attempt to fill the stadium to its new expanded capacity of 27,500 on July 30th.

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About Author

Steve is the founder and owner of Prost Amerika. He covered the expansion of MLS soccer in Cascadia at first hand. As Editor in Chief of soccerly.com, he was accredited at the 2014 World Cup Final. He is the former President of the North American Soccer Reporters Association/ Originally from Glasgow, he is a supporter of the Great Glasgow Alternative, Partick Thistle.


  1. Didn’t this happen last year or the year before to another team? I don’t remember the team asking for fans shirts but I thought the equipment didn’t arrive with the team.

  2. Did the nets go missing too? Guess they could always throw out a couple of cones. I raise my juicebox to the Caps!

  3. A couple of years ago when the Rapids went to LA to play the Galaxy the bag with the player’s shorts got lost by the airline. So they borrowed Chivas USA’s shorts.

  4. Not as bad as seeing Crystal Palace Baltimore’s coach place himself on the roster just days before the roster deadline so that he could possibly play for the team that had no money to pay its players. Just sayin’ the problems in MLS are better for the Whitecaps than at the USL level.

  5. Am I the only one that actually thinks this is kinda cool. Sure it’s a dumb screwup, but that will be in Whitecaps folklore forever more.

    My shirt would only be fit for Conor Kasey.

    • No Derek. I do too. I think the Caps handled it superbly and it sounds like with totally the right attitude.

  6. The Caps staff brought out all the players shirts at the end of the game, borrowed or not, and I got Jarju’s, autographed as well.

    And no…I’m not putting it on eBay!

  7. You have to watch out for the underpaid locker room staff @ away games when it comes to having $110 jerseys laying around. Keep plenty of extras in multiple bags as a precaution.

  8. @Hattrick, so are you saying they were stolen?

    The Caps arrived on Tuesday in San Jose, so if they were missing then, they could easily have arranged to FedEx replacements.

    It makes sense, therefore, that they were stolen from Buck Shaw on game day