Pitchside: Whitecaps FC v Red Bull New York

Five times New York has taken the pitch against Vancouver, and five times they've failed to walk away with all the points. Tonight, the Whitecaps FC extended their unbeaten run against the Red Bulls for another year.

In a year that promises to honour the past, we have to go all the way back to 2000 to find the last time Vancouver lost a home opener. On that night, Seattle Sounders FC won in a six goal thriller.

With a new manager in Carl Robinson, 2014 always promised to be a season of change, but this close season has been busier than most. The Whitecaps can boast no fewer than 12 new faces, five of which featured tonight, and a sixth was an unused substitute.

With the 2014 FIFA World Cup fast approaching, we are reminded that Major League Soccer was founded in part as a way to help the national team.

Because of that, the league limits clubs to eight international players. But there are ways around this, and incredibly, out of the 26 players currently in Vancouver, only seven can truly be considered domestic with no other citizenship or permanent residency.

Indeed, tonight Vancouver benefited from goals scored by a Scot, Uruguayan, and a Chilean, while a Jamaican and an Englishman earned assists.

Although far from perfect, an emphatic victory over last year's champions was just what the club, and the city, needed. And much of it must be attributed to Carl Robinson.

Last year, when the Whitecaps went ahead, it was Rennie's strategy to bring on defensive players to solidify and hold the lead. He was content to grind out narrow victories.

By comparison, Robinson made three positive substitutions, freshening up his attackers, and further wearing down the New York defence. He wanted to go for the jugular.

Both are perfectly acceptable strategies, but Robinson's certainly is the more entertaining. After the match, he was absolutely gutted that the Caps conceded in stoppage time.

Not only did it take some of the shine off his first match in charge, but it also denied him the chance to equal the Whitecaps best ever Major League Soccer match in his first attempt.

Fortunately, CD Chivas are the Caps next opponent. They will head to Los Angeles for the March 16th match, before moving on to Boston, where they will play the New England Revolution on the 22nd. Their next match at BC Place will be on the 29th when they welcome the Houston Dynamo. Click here to open our fullscreen slideshow.