Techera destroys Central FC in Vancouver

Vancouver Whitecaps Cristian Techera celebrates scoring against Central FC on Sep. 28, 2016 during the group stage of the 2016/17 Concacaf Champions League. (concacaf.com)

Thursday September 29, 2016

Cristian Techera scored two goals and had two assists to hand Vancouver Whitecaps a comfortable 4-1 victory over Central FC in the 2016/17 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League on Wednesday.

The 24-year-old Uruguayan helped set up Blas Perez’s early opener and Masato Kudo’s insurance goal early in the second half at BC Place in Vancouver, and converted a penalty in between that stood up as the winner for the Whitecaps, who finished with a perfect 4W-0D-0L record in Group C.

Techera, who scored for a 1-0 win against the Trinidadians in Couva in the first leg on Aug. 8, added another after halftime on Marcel de Jong’s service to cap his second brace in three matches and tie Pachuca’s Hirving Lozano as the tournament’s leading scorer on five goals.

With only the top team of the eight groups advancing, Vancouver had already qualified for the quarterfinals after defeating hosts Sporting Kansas City, 2-1, on Sep. 13. Any question, however, that the Whitecaps would lose some intensity for their final group match was dispelled by a bright start.

Panama international Blas Perez broke through first in the 11th minute on a sequence that began when Techera reached Kudo’s ball out wide right. Techera dragged a cross back across the 6-yard box, where Perez popped up for the finish.

Perez created Techera’s first goal nine minutes later, getting behind Central’s defense and inducing Keion Goodridge into the penalty area. Techera stepped up and coolly chipped his penalty into the center of the goal.

Sean De Silva reduced Central’s deficit to 2-1 in the 44th minute off a 22-yard free kick that he bent over Vancouver’s defensive wall and into the top left corner.

Kudo pushed Vancouver’s lead back to two goals four minutes after the break. Techera received Marcel de Jong’s perfect diagonal ball and then delivered a cross from the right side of the box that Kudo slotted home with his right foot from the edge of the six-yard box.

Techera completed his brace in 70th minute, finishing a De Jong feed with his left foot from 12-yards out.

Central (0-1-2, 1) will complete group play with a visit to Sporting Kansas City (0-1-2, 1) on Oct. 19, while another Trinidadian outfit, W Connection, will be away to Honduras Progreso on Thursday Sep. 29 in San Pedro Sula.

Connection (0-1-1, 1) sits bottom of Group A, with Mexico’s Pumas UNAM (2-0-1, 4) occupying top spot and Progreso (1-1-1, 4) second. W Connection will complete group play away to Pumas on Oct. 20.

Central, the two-time defending Digicel Pro League champions, will begin their domestic league defence against W Connection on Tuesday Oct. 4 from 8pm at the Ato Boldon Stadium, Trinidad.

CONCACAF Champions League 2016/17
Group C (Second Leg)
BC Place, Vancouver
Vancouver Whitecaps 4 (Blas Perez 11’, Cristian Techera 22’ pen., 70’, Masato Kudo 49’) vs Central FC 1 (Sean De Silva 44’)

Teams
Vancouver Whitecaps: 70.Paolo Tornaghi, 8.Fraser Aird, 4.Kendall Watson, 26.Tim Parker, 46.Brett Lewis (30.Men McKendry 64th minute), 13.Cristian Techera, 17.Andrew Jacobson, 33.Marcell De Jong, 11.Gabriel Mezquida (32.Marcos Bustos), 9.Masato Kudo (47.Kyle Greig 72nd minute), 27.Blas Perez

Unused substitutes: 24.Marco Carducci, 14.Cole Seiler, 67.Alphonso Davies, 19.Erik Hurtado

Coach: Carl Robinson

Central FC: 21.Jan-Michael Williams, 15.Kaydion Gabriel (16.Kadeem Corbin 84th minute), 3.Keion Goodridge, 5.Keston George, 24.Kevon Villaroel (10.Keron Cummings 52nd minute), 19.Nathaniel Garcia (14.Nicholas Dillon 69th minute), 6.Leston Paul, 9.Kenwyne Jones, 8.Sean De Silva, 11.Darren Mitchell, 7.Jason Marcano

Unused substitutes: 1.Javon Sample, 17.Johan Peltier, 26.Mickaeel Jem Gordon

Coach: Dale Saunders