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Vancouver Whitecaps will not use DeMerit injury as excuse

Vancouver Whitecaps head coach Martin Rennie insists his team will cope without captain Jay DeMerit.

The former Watford centre-back is expected to be sidelined for the 2013 MLS campaign after rupturing his Achilles tendon early in the season opening win over Toronto FC on the weekend.

Despite the loss, Rennie feels that former Carolina RailHawks and HB Koge defender Brad Rusin will be an apt replacement alongside Andy O'Brien.

"Obviously, it's the first few minutes of the game and the first few minutes of the season," Rennie said of DeMerit. "But we have people who can play in those positions, and we do have good leadership on our team.

"So we'll be able to go forward strong. Obviously, it's a blow, but I don't think it's something that we need to use as an excuse."

He added of Rusin: "He's a quality player, and he's at a good age where he can keep getting better.

"He's a fantastic athlete, and I think also playing beside Andy O'Brien can be big for him, just to get that communication and organization to him. But he's someone I've worked with before and, I think, will be a really good MLS player."

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Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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