The Vancouver Whitecaps are a Major League Soccer team that usually plays home games during the regular season from March to October at BC Place Stadium.
Due to COVID-19, the 2021 season didn’t begin until April. The Whitecaps were also forced to temporarily relocate to the United States because of border restrictions. That ended in August as the Whitecaps played their first match at BC Place in over a year on August 21st.
This article contains the following information about the Vancouver Whitecaps:
Vancouver Whitecaps Football Club
The Whitecaps normally have 17 home games in MLS play each season. They can also have additional matches in other competitions. This includes the Canadian Championship which is an annual tournament of thirteen teams from across the country. The Whitecaps have won the Canadian Championship once, in 2015.
There is also the CONCACAF Champions League which is an annual tournament of sixteen teams from across North America, Central America and the Caribbean. The Whitecaps have qualified for the Champions League two times, most recently in 2016.
The Team in 2022
Vanni Sartini is the Whitecaps’ head coach entering the 2022, his first full year on the job after taking over partway through last season.
In 2021 the Whitecaps rose up in the standings after Sartini took over, finishing 6th in the Western Conference and making the playoffs for the first time since 2017. There, they unfortunately lost in the first round to Kansas City.
Here are some of the Whitecaps’ key players in 2022:
- Ryan Gauld: a 26-year-old Scottish attacking midfielder, he was brought in to be the team’s new star player halfway through last season. He finished the 2021 regular season with 4 goals and 6 assists and was nominated for the MLS Newcomer of the Year award.
- Brian White: a 26-year-old American striker, he caught fire in the second half of last season with 11 goals and 4 assists in his final 18 appearances.
- Caio Alexandre: a 23-year-old Brazilian midfielder, he was a marquee signing last year but missed over half the season due to injury. He should play a much bigger role this season.
2022 Home Game Schedule
After having to begin last season temporarily relocated from Vancouver, the Whitecaps are set to play all their home games this season here in BC.
Below are the scheduled home games for 2022. For the full broadcast schedule including both these and road games, see the Vancouver Whitecaps‘ website.
- March 5, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs New York City at 3:00 pm.
- April 2, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs Sporting Kansas City at 5:00 pm.
- April 9, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs Portland Timbers at 7:00 pm.
- May 8, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs Toronto FC at 1:00 pm.
- May 14, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs San Jose Earthquakes at 4:00 pm.
- May 18, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs FC Dallas at 7:00 pm.
- June 4, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs Real Salt Lake at 4:00 pm.
- June 26, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs New England Revolution at 5:00 pm.
- July 2, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs LAFC at 7:00 pm.
- July 8, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs Minnesota United at 7:30 pm.
- July 23, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs Chicago Fire at 7:00 pm.
- August 5, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs Houston Dynamo at 7:30 pm.
- August 17, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs Colorado Rapids at 7:00 pm.
- August 27, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs Nashville SC at 7:00 pm.
- September 14, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs LA Galaxy at 7:00 pm.
- September 17, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs Seattle Sounders at 7:00 pm.
- October 1, 2022 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs Austin FC at 7:00 pm.
Single game tickets for Whitecaps soccer home games usually start at about $30. Season tickets start at around $50 per month.
The price for season tickets for Whitecaps home games depend on where you sit. BC Place Stadium is divided up into sections. Below is a list of prices per month by section for the 2022 season.
- White – $50
- Teal – $50
- Yellow – $70
- Blue – $113
- Purple – $150
- Pink – $156 to $230
- Orange – $312
In addition to being able to watch all the games, benefits of season tickets include 15% off VWFC gear, $30 each time you refer a friend, discounts at pub partners and invites to member-only events. (Note: Exact details may vary.)
Whitecaps Fan Groups
The Vancouver Whitecaps have three main official supporter groups – the Southsiders, Curva Collective and Rain City Brigade.
The Southsiders are the largest and loudest of the three supporter groups. They typically take over the southeast corner of BC Place Stadium (in sections 249-254).
Southsiders used to meet for pre-game drinks at Doolin’s which is a pub on Granville Street at Nelson not far from BC Place Stadium. Prior to COVID-19, the group began meeting first at the Blarney Stone at 216 Carrall Street in Gastown. After their ritual of pre-game beverages, the Southsiders would then march en masse to the game.
Ahead of the 2020 season, the Whitecaps announced the creation of the Village Stand, a joint effort with the Southsiders and Curva Collective. Located in the middle of their two groups, the Village Stand is a general admission section with unassigned seating.
Vancouver Whitecaps Team History
Below is the history of Vancouver’s professional soccer team. The first section details the history of the team prior to the year 2000. The second has information about the team since then.
The Soccer Team from 1974 to 2000
Founded in 1974, the Whitecaps played in the North American Soccer League until the league folded in 1984. In 1979 they won the NASL Championship, the first major North American sports championship for the city in over 60 years. Around 100,000 people attended the championship parade on Robson Street.
When the Canadian Soccer League (CSL) formed in 1986 a new franchise in Vancouver was created. They were named the Vancouver 86ers because of the year the club was founded, the year Canada first qualified for the World Cup (1986), and the year Vancouver became a city (1886). It was also the year of the 1986 World’s Fair, or Expo 86.
In 1986, its first year with its new name, the team moved from playing at BC Place Stadium (which had opened in 1983) to Swangard Stadium in Burnaby.
The 86ers won four straight CSL championships from 1988 to 1991. During those years they broke the Canadian pro sports record for the longest undefeated streak (46 games). When the CSL folded in 1992 the 86ers moved to the American Professional Soccer League (or APSL which was later renamed the USL). They then remained in that league until their move to MLS in 2011.
The Soccer Team Since 2000
In 2000 the 86ers changed their name back to the Whitecaps. They won the USL Championship twice, in 2006 and 2008.
In 2009 it was announced that the Whitecaps would join the MLS as an expansion team in 2011, along with Portland. The Whitecaps played most of their first season with the new league in the temporary stadium, Empire Field, which stood at the site of the Pacific National Exhibition. In the fall of 2011 they moved back to BC Place Stadium where they’ve played ever since.
In their MLS history the Whitecaps’ best season was in 2015, where they finished 2nd in the Western Conference standings and won the Canadian Championship. That meant they qualified for the 2016 CONCACAF Champions League where they reached the semifinals (their best finish in that competition).
The Vancouver Whitecaps are one of several professional sports teams in the Lower Mainland.
To learn more about other professional sports teams in Metro Vancouver, check out the following:
- Vancouver Professional Sports Teams
- Vancouver Canucks Hockey
- BC Lions Football
- Vancouver Giants Hockey
- Vancouver Canadians Baseball