My W-League bias and fickleness, let me show you it.

My team loyalties at the W-League level aren’t as strong as they are for WPS or NCAA. These teams change so much that I go season to season, bouncing my attention around three or four teams depending the the rosters they put together and who actually shows up.  The Pali Blues had me hooked in 2008, mildly interested in 2009, and apathetic in 2010. The Vancouver Whitecaps have always had some degree of my interest, but rarely hooked my support–too many youth national players in 2008, too few of the CWNT in 2009. 2010, though, reminds me of the rosters in 2005 and 2006. When Kara Lang committed to them this season, that was it. There’s my loyalty for this year. Pali’s signing of two Irish, two Cardinal, and Alex Morgan cannot buy my love.

This year, the Whitecaps are a mix of Canadian international experience. Here is their lineup from Sunday’s 3-2 win over Pali:

1.Siobhan Chamberlain; 16.Robyn Gayle, 2.Emily Zurrer, 19.Martina Franko (3.Shannon Woeller 76′), 21.Danielle Sweeney; 13.Sophie Schmidt, 17.Chelsea Stewart, 15.Kara Lang (18.Monica Lam-Feist 79′); 10.Jodi-Ann Robinson, 6.Amy Vermeulen (11.Desiree Scott 45′), 14.Melissa Tancredi (23.Nikki Wright 90′)

Subs not used: 27.Stephanie Panozzo, 25.Rachael Pelat, Ranee Premji

If you follow the CWNT or their youth national teams at all (which I suspect is not likely), most of those names are familiar. The likes of UCLA, UNC, Portland, and Notre Dame are represented here.  There are two former WPS starters. A handful of these players have won W-League and NCAA championships in the past. Most of them have played together at various levels.

In the past couple of weeks, the Whitecaps have dealt Pali two losses, including the first in the Blues’ history. I respect Pali’s history and Charlie Naimo’s ability to put together an amazing team, year after year, and I’m glad that when Pali finally fell, it was to a team of Vancouver’s caliber.

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