August 11, 2012
DALLAS NEEDS MAX POINTS
Rapids roll into Frisco
With time fleeing from FC Dallas, definitely not on its side, the Red and White return to its home stadium desperate to secure full points. Only three more home MLS matches remain in the regular season for Dallas after Saturday's game. In comparison, after seeing the Rapids, Dallas will play six total league games on the road.
|Oscar Pareja, familiar face to FC Dallas fans and players, will lead the Colorado Rapids to FC Dallas Stadium for an 8 p.m. match.
photo by Phil Stephens
FCD must play at Vancouver, Salt Lake and the L.A. Galaxy before returning to Texas to host Seattle on Sunday, Sept. 2.
When Dallas returns home, fans will know much more about the fate of the Frisco team. If Dallas has already taken a downward turn from today, most players and fans will be looking ahead to the 2013 season. However, there is enough time to turn the season to good, but it will require a number of wins and hardly any losses. That winning must re-start Saturday.
When Colorado take the field, there will likely be plenty of applause for the visitors. For one, Dallas native Drew Moor is a defensive stalwart for the Rapids and was quite popular at FCD until traded to Colorado for defender Ugo Ihemelu. Now Ihemelu is in limbo for Dallas after suffering an early season head injury and has now missed months on the pitch to concussion-related symptoms. He is definitely listed as out for Saturday's game.
Another well-known figure for Colorado here, is its head coach Oscar Pareja, who took the Rapids' head job just before the season started. He is intimately familiar with Dallas' personnel because he coached most of them and recruited some as the FCD assistant coach. He was also a very popular midfielder in Dallas as a player.
Just recently, Dave Dir, Dallas' first head coach, was hired by Pareja to be assistant coach in the mile-high city. Dir has basically remained in the North Texas area since being relieved of the head job (while Dallas was known as the Burn and playing at the Cotton Bowl).
The Rapids come into Dallas after breaking a horrible streak of six consecutive losses. The team did it in impressive fashion, beating rival Real Salt Lake 1-0 at Dick's Sporting Good Stadium.
Dallas brings whatever momentum it can derive from last week's 1-1 draw at Portland. The Rapids' victory pushed it two points ahead of Dallas into seventh place. The Red and White reside in eighth place with 23 points. Colorado has 25. Obviously, a victory by FCD would lift it past Colorado, for at least until Saturday, when the Rapids entertain Chivas USA.
Dallas is now facing another of its three-games in eight days tests. It could ensure it stays ahead for a week with a victory in four days when it visits Vancouver. Then FCD moves over to Real Salt Lake for another rigorous venue and dangerous opponent. Three-straight wins in this period, which most would say is almost impossible, would be a huge boost. It still needs at least two wins and a draw because now through the rest of the season FCD is playing only Western Conference rivals. That is the kind of points predicament Dallas is now facing in trying to reach the playoffs.