On-target Techera timely for Vancouver

Cristian Techera (pictured) has played with the Vancouver Whitecaps since 2015. (Photo courtesy of Vancouver Whitecaps FC)


VANCOUVER, Canada -- Cristian Techera just might getting into form at the right time for the Vancouver Whitecaps.

Nicknamed "The Bug," because of his 5-foot-2 stature, the Uruguayan midfielder stood tall in the team's two most recent outings, scoring his first two goals of the Major League Soccer season.

That has been quite heartening for head coach Carl Robinson, who will need as many healthy and fit players when the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League commences in August.

“The bug that we saw last year is still here,” Robinson commented.

Techera enjoyed a fine 2015 in Vancouver notching seven goals and five assists, before struggling this season.

He finally opened his account with a penalty kick in a 2-2 draw with the Colorado Rapids on Sunday night and added a 25-yard goal in a 2-0 win over Real Salt Lake three days later. 

Robinson said Techera's problems were caused by an unspecified injury.

"He's been carrying a little bit of an injury for the last four, five, six weeks which is why he hasn't played or started many games," he stated. "I haven't shouted it from rooftops because no one needed to know."

Now Robinson can sing the 24-year-old’s praises.

“When you are carrying a little injury, you don’t play with as much confidence as you possibly can,” he remarked. “In the last two games, I think he has shown great character by scoring the penalty on the weekend and [on Wednesday] I thought he was excellent for the 60 minutes. So hopefully he’s getting back to where he was last year.”

Techera and the Whitecaps (8W-4D-8L, 28 points) host Orlando City SC at BC Place on Saturday.

Vancouver begins its 2016/17 SCCL journey with a Group C match at Trinidad & Tobago’s Central FC on August 2.