Howdy folks. Another weekend and more dropped points for FC Dallas.
FC Dallas squeaked out a point in Salt Lake last Saturday against 10 man RSL in what was probably Dallas' last gasp hope to get into the playoffs. I know they're "mathematically" alive but lets be real. Michael Black at MLSSoccer.com had the Match Recap.
Despite being down a man for most of the match and often overrun, Real Salt Lake managed to salvage a 1-1 draw against FC Dallas on Saturday night at Rio Tinto Stadium.
Álvaro Saborío made a spectacular individual play to give RSL the lead in the 60th minute, but Kenny Cooper's goal 12 minutes later evened things up for the duration, a result that puts a damper on FCD's playoff hopes. .
FCD had a very active attack for most of the night but couldn't seem to finish a decent chance. Jackson could have had a couple of goals but between Nick Rimando and the goal post the guy couldn't catch a break.
FCDallas.com has their video look back at September. It wasn't the prettiest month they've had this season, as far as results, but at least there was a win squeezed in there.
The strong start to the 2013-2014 campaign continued for all of FCD's Academy teams last weekend as they battled I-45 rivals Houston Dynamo at Toyota Soccer Center. The FCD U-12 through U-18 teams went 5-0-1 against the Dynamo while both USSDA U-16 and U-18 teams have yet to allow a goal.
What a great showing for all the Academy teams! It's always a good day when we beat Houston in any capacity.
We have watched Fabian Castillo blossom this year with career highs in assists and minutes played. The young Colombian has always been touted as a future star in this league but has had trouble showing that he can be anything more than a "speed guy" in the FCD attack. He sat down with MLSSoccer.com and takled about his desire to become a more well rounded player that uses his speed as part of a larger bag of tricks. Matt Barbour has the story.
There are the flashes of brilliance when he motors past a defender on the wing, or weaves his way through defenders into the box. But those are often accompanied by an unnecessary turnover or an ill-advised shot bypassing an open teammate in a dangerous position.
And this is a perception Castillo wants to change.
"I like having speed, but I also want to be known for my technical abilities and for my intelligence on the field," Castillo recently told MLSsoccer.com through an interpreter. "I’m going to continue doing that and taking advantage of the speed that I have while at the same time being a technical and intelligent player with the ball."
Fabian has developed into a really nice player for Dallas who, when he gets his head in the game, can be one of the Hoops top threats.
With top scorer Blas Perez gone this weekend, with the Panama National Team, FC Dallas will most likely rely on Kenny Cooper to be their target man against Chicago. Kenny broke his almost 5 month goalless drought last weekend against RSL with a great finish from a sublime cross from Je-Vaughn Watson. Kenny spoke with Daniel Robertson about what the rivalry with Chicago has meant over his years at FC Dallas.
"I definitely feel that rivalry and I remember my first time around with Dallas how important those games were having our fans travel up to Chicago for games," said Cooper. "I think it’s a game that is important to fans. "Rivalries are always important to fans, whether it’s Chicago or Houston, these games are always great and when you know it’s important to fans you want to make sure they go home happy at the end of the day."
Many have been critical of KFC this season and a strong game against Chicago could really turn things around for the big striker.
Chicago-fire.com writer Jeff Crandall also points out that with Blas gone, Kenny is one of the FCD players that the Fire need to be watching out for.
Cooper is a powerful forward that has historically done well against the Fire, tallying six goals in 12 career matches. With a goal last weekend under his belt and Dallas fighting for their playoff lives, he won’t be one to take lightly.
It should also be noted that Crandall says that Jackson (yes our Jackson) could also be a problem for the Fire after his recent performance in Utah.
In last week’s match against DC, the Fire played a very open style of play in the first half, attacking in numbers. If you only looked at the score line, you would think that this tactic was a success but it could’ve been a lot different if it wasn’t for Sean Johnson. He bailed his team out with some brilliant saves after DC caught the Fire out with too many players forward.
It is understandable that the Fire will play in a similar fashion against Dallas due to the need for three points but allowing a player like Jackson time and space on a counter attack can be very dangerous.
Jackson did everything last game but put the ball in the back of the net. It's unfortunate that he and Kenny are only now possibly seeing a resurgence.
If you haven't gotten tickets for tomorrow's game head to the ticket link and get yours now!
Enemy At The Gates
The Brimstone Cup rivalry may have waned in the past few years due to the teams only playing once a year now, but that shouldn't take away from either team's desperation for a win here.
Drew Epperley has just posted his weekly Know Your Enemy piece at FCDallas.com and breaks down tomorrow's match up.
Chicago won the only meeting between the two clubs a year ago, 2-1. The win was the first time since 2001 that the Fire won the Brimstone Cup.
Dallas last beat the Fire back in October of 2011 and has lost just once at home to Chicago since 1999.
Frank Klopas’ team is still in the playoff hunt in the Eastern Conference, currently sitting two points out of the fifth and final spot. The 12-12-7 Fire are coming off a 3-0 win last weekend over D.C. United. Chicago got goals from Jeff Larentowicz, Bakary Soumare and Quincy Amarikawa in the win.
Historically Dallas have dominated this rivalry and with Chicago not having a win in Dallas for 14 years we can only hope that this trend continues.
Dan Haiek and Matt Doyle also previewed this game for MLSSoccer.com in their weekly series The Scouting Report.
Also check out the Golazo game feed at MLSSocer.com for tons of stats.
It was reported earlier this week that Eddie Johnson picked up an injury in training and will not be playing in either qualifying game coming up. Thomas Floyd at Goal.com has the story on Eddie's replacement as well as the other two new editions to the roster for tonight and Tuesday's games.
With their MLS obligations during the international break concluded, defender Clarence Goodson, midfielder Brad Davis and forward Chris Wondolowski were called into U.S. national team camp Thursday.
Paired with the injury withdrawal of forward Eddie Johnson (left groin strain), the additions bring Jurgen Klinsmann's roster to 22 players for the USA's final two World Cup qualifiers. The Americans, who have already booked their ticket to Brazil 2014, host Jamaica on Friday in Kansas City, Kan., before wrapping the Hexagonal at Panama on Tuesday.
Goal.com editor Avi Creditor also has the story on who Jurgen Klinsmann has selected to be the Captain of the US squad during Clint Dempsey's absence.
Tim Howard will assume captain's duties for the U.S. national team in Clint Dempsey's absence, U.S. Soccer confirmed on its official Twitter feed on Wednesday.
Friday's World Cup qualifying match against Jamaica at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kan., will mark the third time this year that Howard wears the armband for Jurgen Klinsmann. The Everton and USA No. 1 goalkeeper captained the Americans in February's World Cup qualifier in Honduras and again in August's friendly at Bosnia & Herzegovina.
If the USA sweeps both qualifying matches against Jamaica and Panama, then Howard -- assuming he starts -- would tie Kasey Keller for the most wins for a goalkeeper in USA history with 53. Howard is also currently tied with Tony Meola for second most clean sheets in USA history with 32.
Tim Howard makes the most sense to wear the arm band as he's one of the most vocal leaders on this squad. The bigger issue is how badly will the USMNT miss having Deuce on the field against Jamaica and Panama?
Don't forget to tune into tonight's match against Jamaica in Kansas City on ESPN and Tuesday's game in Panama which will be broadcast on beIN Sports. Kick off tonight is at 5:30 CT and Tuesday's match will be an 8pm start.
Thanks as always for stopping by! Let us know what you think in the comments below.