VANCOUVER -- The Vancouver Whitecaps did not achieve one of their primary goals. Now, they will focus on the other one. The Whitecaps resume their Major League Soccer playoff quest Saturday against the Portland Timbers as they attempt to put a disappointing loss in the Canadian Championship final behind them. You can watch the game live on TSN and TSN Mobile TV at 10pm et/7pm pt. "Its always disappointing when you lose any game, but a cup final is even more disappointing, because you cant go back and change it," said Whitecaps coach Martin Rennie after the team touched down in Portland, Ore., on Friday. "But we need to move on." The Canadian title has eluded the Whitecaps since their days in lower-tier leagues, but they dropped the two-game, total-goals final series 2-1 on aggregate to a Toronto team that has lost all nine of its MLS games. The Caps lost the decisive second leg 1-0 in Toronto on Wednesday, delivering a lacklustre performance that defied the importance of the game. Although Saturdays contest still marks an early point on the road to the MLS promised land, it serves as an important milepost during Vancouvers second season in North Americas top league. The Whitecaps (5-3-3) and Timbers (3-5-3) both entered MLS last season, but Portland placed a respectable sixth in the Western Conference while the Whitecaps finished last overall with two different coaches. The Timbers also beat the Whitecaps in both games between the teams. Vancouver has been the better team lately in league play, posting three wins and a draw in its last five games. Portland has lost four of its past five games, with only a draw to its credit. A Whitecaps victory will serve as another sign of how far Vancouver has advanced under new coach Rennie, who has strived to put his stamp on the team. Vancouver can also match the six wins that it mustered all of last season. Rennie has rotated his lineup considerably lately as the Whitecaps have played two games per week throughout the month. He is expected to do the same in Portland before his club gets a two-week break. "Its basically because weve got so many games and we want to be making sure that were putting out a strong lineup in every game," said Rennie. The Whitecaps showed signs of progress in a 2-2 draw with a strong Seattle Sounders squad last weekend. But Seattles 90th-minute tying goal and the loss to Toronto raised more questions about the Whitecaps ability to play their best at the right time -- and produce offence consistently. Vancouver has a bevy of talented strikers, but no strong offensive tandem has emerged. "We have a lot of weapons, but youre right in that we havent found the right tandem yet," said captain Jay DeMerit, stressing the club wins and loses as a team. On the positive side, he added, the Caps still plenty of games to try and find the right combinations. Returning strikers Camilo and Eric Hassli have yet to pay dividends together and newcomers are still getting used to each other. Camilo, a five-foot-seven and 155-pound Brazilian tends to be a solo artist. On the other hand, Hassli, a six-foot-four and 200-pound Frenchman, is more of a finisher who needs passers to find him in space. Camilo has three MLS goals to date and Hassli has scored two league markers, but they have scored their goals while playing apart or with help from others. The anticipated connection between Hassli and fellow Frenchman Sebastien Le Toux has also been slow to develop after they combined on Vancouvers first goal of the season against Montreal. One reason: Hassli has played a reserve role in several games lately. It remains to be seen whether he will get his second straight start. Rennie said Hassli "has made a big difference" while subbing in. He came off the bench to score Vancouvers goal in a 1-1 tie in the first leg against Toronto and also scored the winning goal in a 2-1 victory over San Jose earlier this month in the same fashion. Like Hassli, Le Toux, who has three goals, tends to be more of a finisher, but has not found a reliable offensive partner. Omar Salgado, 18, has emerged as a playmaker while being deployed as a left winger in his second season with the Caps. Rookie Darren Mattocks, a speedster comparable to Camilo, has displayed considerable promise, but suffered from a lack of finish against Seattle. Rennie wants him to be more "clinical" with his chances. But the coach, who also wants to see his team pass better than it did against Toronto, does not believe he needs to find a tandem that can play well together. Noting the team scores and defends as an entire unit, Rennie indicated he will be happy whether two, three or four players score -- as long as the goals come. "Its more about the production at the end of it," Rennie said. Notes: MLS Players Union salary figures show that Hassli will earn a team-high salary of US$790,000 this season, not including bonuses and other incentives the Whitecaps may have included. DeMerit is Vancouvers second-highest-paid player at a guaranteed $350,000. ... Portlands highest-paid player is striker Kris Boyd at $1.5 million. Boyd shares the team goals lead at three with Darlington Nagbe. ... The game serves as part of the Cascadia Cup, an in-season series between Vancouver, Portland and Seattle. The club with the best record in games between the teams will claim the trophy, which was created by fans. ... Whitecaps defender Alain Rochat is expected to play despite leaving Wednesdays game in Toronto early with an ankle injury. ... Vancouver striker Atiba Harris, bothered by a sore thigh, did not make the trip. ... Portland is coming off a 1-0 loss to Spanish side Valencia in a friendly. cheap nfl jerseys china . But, these days ... not so much. While the Pittsburgh Steelers stayed in the thick of the conferences muddled playoff chase last week, the San Diego Chargers have done nearly everything to ensure theyll not be playing next month. Wholesale Jerseys from china .E.I. Rocket defeated the Chicoutimi Sagueneens 6-3 in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. All six P. . Kuale, set to become a free agent in February, was granted his release early by the Argonauts so that he could pursue NFL opportunities before the February 15th free agency date, according to TSN CFL analyst Dave Naylor. Jerseys From China . How long the unsigned Toronto Maple Leafs defenceman stays there remains to be seen. In announcing the signing Monday, the Swedish Elite League team made it sound like Franson would be around for the entire season, but his agent later clarified that he had the option to return to North America if the lockout ended and a contract could be reached with the Leafs. nfl jerseys china . The Mariners made the moves on Tuesday before their game against Toronto. Seattle was down two pitchers in the bullpen after trades Monday night that sent Steve Delabar to Toronto and Brandon League to the Los Angeles Dodgers.CALGARY -- It was definitely not a September to remember for the Edmonton Eskimos. The Eskimos (5-8) lost all five games they played in the month, including Fridays 39-15 setback to the Calgary Stampeders (8-5). "We played poorly in every phase of the game and Calgary deserved the win that they got," said Edmonton coach Kavis Reed. "Right now in a five-game losing streak, were unstable." Its the first time in their 64-year history that the Eskimos havent managed to post at least one win in the month of September. It was also the third time the Eskimos lost to their Alberta rivals in September, although the previous two games were a lot closer. The Stamps edged the Esks 31-30 on Labour Day in Calgary before also winning the rematch in Edmonton 20-18 four nights later. "Its a tough pill to swallow -- five in a row -- especially against somebody in our division like this, Calgary," said Edmonton receiver Fred Stamps. "We have to figure out a way to get this monkey off our back. "You cant take anything away from Calgary. They played good football. We just have to play better football, offence, defence and special teams." One bright spot for the Eskimos was the play of rookie quarterback Matt Nichols, who drew the starting aassignment with both Steven Jyles and Kerry Joseph nursing injuries.dddddddddddd "I felt like I got more comfortable as the game went along," said Nichols, who completed 14-of-26 passes for one touchdown and one interception. "I made a few plays here and there, but obviously not enough. We just need to put up some more points as an offence and help out our defence a little more." Nichols tossed an 18-yard touchdown pass to Stamps in the second quarter and ran for a 17-yard score in the third quarter. "I thought he did a good job of managing the game," said Reed. "Unfortunately we didnt get the time of possession that we needed because Calgary did a good job offensively of controlling the ball. "He got us back into within 10 points late in the third quarter. Unfortunately we werent able to hold them defensively to give him a chance to bring his team back." Reed said that hell evaluate during practice next week whether or not Nichols will get his second career start when the Eskimos met Hamilton. "Whatever my role is next week, Im going to do to the fullest extent," Nichols said. "Im extremely happy I got the opportunity and that experience that I think will go a long way in my career." ' ' '

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