August 15, 2012
FC DALLAS ON ROAD AGAIN
Visit Vancouver Whitecaps tonight
It was one swell time for FC Dallas players and coaches following their thrilling 3-2 win over Colorado Saturday. But tonight (9 pm on FSSW Plus), a new challenge awaits in Canada, where the Vancouver Whitecaps will be trying to add to its fourth-place Western Conference total of 37 points, 11 more than Dallas. While a victory is always the initial goal, FCD might breathe a sigh of relief leaving Canada in its rear-view mirror with a one-point draw.
|The rapidly improving attacking midfielder David Ferreira will be a key figure for FC Dallas' hopes of coming away from a visit to Vancouver with points in the standings.
Photo by Michael Stephens
Per usual, Dallas will be missing some key characters to injury, but more from international duty, as Brek Shea (USA), Julian de Guzman (CAN) and Carlos Rodriguez (Panama) will each join their respective national teams for international friendlies tonight. If its any consolation, Vancouver will be missing four to international duty in Russell Telbert (CAN); Etienne Barbara (MLT); Darren Mattocks and Dane Richards (JAM). Vancouver will also be missing Omar Salgado to a R. foot fracture. Dallas defender Ugo Ihemelu (concussion symptoms) and Alex Lee (lower abdominal strain) are out for this game, while forward Blas Perez is doubtful, as is midfielder Jackson (concussion symptoms) and Ricardo Villar (R. foot strain).
Mattocks (with seven goals) is the Whitecaps' leading scorer and forward Richards will be missed as well. He is the Whitecaps' second-leading scorer with three goals and two assists to his credit. Perez, of course, is FCD's top goal-getter and his injury absence has been a real blow to the Red and White through much of the season.
The good news, at least for some of Dallas' younger players, is an opportunity to start and contribute. Ruben Luna, for instance, started and went the distance in last Saturday's game and he can expect more of the same tonight. Bryan Leyva is expected to see a starting role as well on the left side. These are prime opportunities for youngsters such as Luna and Leyva, a chance to really show they belong at this level.
With Ferreira beginning to show the kind of form that earned him the league MVP status following the 2009 season, and the ever-improving and maturing Fabian Castillo, Dallas should be able to rustle up some dangerous chances during the course of the game. But playing on the road is always a tough nut to crack and FCD Head Coach Schellas Hyndman expects nothing less.