I can't remember a more exciting three-minute strech this season.
Yes, there were the two goals against Houston in quick succession. That was a great moment for any Dallas fan, and in the end those two goals proved crucial in our team regaining El Capitan. Watching Dom Kinnear slowly trying to scorch his players to cinders with his eyes was priceless. But it wasn't as exciting for me as Saturday night was.
Down 2-0 at home, with FCD's luck as rotten as it appeared to be, it felt like it was just one of those nights. One of those nights where you hit the post more than a fancy mansion hits the dinner bell. Dallas had done many things right, and yet couldn't get on the scoresheet. Through a terrible combination of a penalty kick and an own goal, Dallas found itself down due to goals scored from outside the traditional run of play.
It felt unfair, in a way.
But the team fought back, and how. There was a certain match it reminded me of.
New England at Dallas, back in 2010. With their unbeaten streak on the line, Dallas found themselves down 2-0. They had missed a PK, squandered several chances, and still fought back and earned a point they had no business earning. That was a magic night that many pointed to as proof of that years' team "never quit" attitude, and that sort of belief can produce results out of nothing.
The best part about that comparison?
Dallas played much better this past Sunday night than the 2010 WC Champion team that barely drew level against a bad Revs squad. Ramon Nuñez had a real, honest to goodness assist from the run of play. Walker Zimmerman scored his first professional goal. We had a big, packed house that saw their team play with the intestinal fortitude of a Cholera survivor.
Those are some very nice bonuses for a team that has only earned two league points in June.
For a team that has only earned two points this month, there are a lot of things to feel good about. The team legitimately looks good on the field, the chemistry is clearly there, and the team is getting younger rather than older. They have earned tough points against good teams (though two of those were draws at home), and have already defeated the current WC leaders.
They have been fortunate in the way things have been lining up for them, but I'd like to think that's karma repaying them for the nasty bit of luck they had last year. Last year, random events conspired to unravel the team even beyond their already weakened state. This year, luck has broken Dallas' way a bit. But that's just as well, every team needs a bit of luck. There's nothing wrong with having a bit of luck fall into your lap. It's certainly not a sign that things are sure to unravel.
That being said, good feelings won't get this team past the finish line. All the optimism, fight and desire needs to start producing wins with more regularity than they have in the past month if they really hope to contend. Especially if they hope to overtake Portland and Montreal, two teams who are backing up their big mouths (in the case of Portland) with big wins.
All things considered though, it was an exciting night to be a Dallas fan. It's important not to underestimate the positive effects that a draw of that nature can have. It helps build that "brothers in arms, us against the world" feeling, a feeling which goes a long way in a grinding season. There are those who will focus exclusively on the negatives in Dallas' game and tactics, of which there were indeed a few. However, with Dallas showing positive signs and with luck seeming to regress back to normal, I'd say that's premature doom and gloom.
It's nice to be on the "comeback" side of an exciting comeback for once, isn't it?