Coffee with the Caps, Friday August 18

Good Friday morning Caps fans, hope you all have had a good week and are nearing the finish line.

After a brief layoff, Vancouver will be back in action this weekend, when their shiny new players will likely take the field. But that hasn’t stopped them from bringing in another addition — and he happens to be a somewhat familiar face.

By this point, you’ve probably had the chance to see the news about Jean Pyerre agreeing to join the Caps on trial. That means you’ve had the chance to dust that name off from the recesses of your memory — the Caps were linked heavily to the Brazilian playmaker in 2021.

A lot has happened since then for the 25-year-old. Pyerre had a move to a Turkish SuperLiga team lined up but it was discovered in January of 2022 that he had testicular cancer. The news lead to his retirement as he sought treatment, a horrible development for what was clearly a bright talent.

Well, Pyerre has exited retirement, playing locally in Brazil before lining up his Vancouver move. It sounds as if he will start with the Whitecaps 2 side, possibly to allow him to return to form and possibly to allow the Caps to clear the needed cap space for him to sign a more formal deal with the senior side.

The Globo story indicates it would be a short-term contract through the end of the calendar year, with Pyerre re-evaluating what his future might look like at that point, whether in Vancouver or elsewhere.

If you’re reading this, you probably are enough of a sicko to have been pretty invested in this transfer two years ago. If you weren’t, well, I’ll jog your memory that Pyerre had monster passing stats, making him one of the elite players in Brazil’s Serie A for progressive passes and a variety of other passing categories. It was no surprise that European clubs were in for him.

Obviously his health is of the foremost concern but this hopefully (presumably?) signals that he has beaten cancer. If Pyerre sticks around and can even come close to regaining the form he displayed with Gremio, this would be a big move, giving the Caps a perfectly able, relatively like-for-like replacement for Julian Gressel on a deal that could not be lower risk for both parties.

Even if Pyerre needs some time to get fit and settled, if he can become a bench piece and start to transition into the starting lineup it will be a massive boost, giving the Caps even more depth and relieving some of the pressure on Ryan Gauld to create the bulk of the team’s chances.

Whether this happens this season or not remains a bit unclear to me. Manuel Veth’s reporting framed it as purely a trial but the Brazilian reports made it sound like a concrete contract was in place. Either way, you feel like the endgame is not for him to remain on the Whitecaps 2 roster. This is a savvy move that also helps a guy who has had rotten luck in recent years and it has all the makings of an absolute home run if he can provide a boost down the stretch run.

Best of the Rest

The Caps will enjoy their last taste of home cooking for a while against the Quakes and will look to make the most of it ahead of a marathon road trip

A laundry list of MLS players remain on European shopping lists, though whether the Caps will have any outgoings remains to be seen

Kamron Habibullah is apparently on trial with Castellon, which plays in the third tier of Spanish football

Messi has said he is willing to play on turf, re-opening the possibility we could see him at BC Place in the seasons to come

Call it the Messi effect: CONCACAF and CONMEBOL have resurrected the Inter-American Cup, where 16 teams from both confederations will square off

One thought on “Coffee with the Caps, Friday August 18

  1. Sebastian Haller also had a testicular cancer diagnosis last summer, I assumed it would mean he would be pretty slow to return, but he came back in the second half of the season with BVB and had a very strong season… Of course every case is different I’m sure, but hopefully Pyerre can be similar. At least it shows that it seems that it’s possible for it to be a recoverable disease

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