Well this one certainly got here quickly. FC Dallas goes to Ohio to face Columbus in a matchup of two teams still looking for their first win. It's only the third game of the season, but I think you're going to see an intense matchup tonight. Columbus looked awful against DC, but the New York game was a definite improvement. They're obviously pretty offensively challenged with their only goal coming from a fluky penalty.
-Could we see a different lineup? Ugo in the middle, Loyd on the right, Jackson in the midfield? Changes could be afoot tonight as Schellas looks to shake things up a bit. My gut says we see the same lineup as last week with Ugo in the middle and Loyd on the right, but we'll see.
-Cunningham faces his old team. If there's one thing we know about Cunny, it's that he's going to be looking hard to get one over on Dallas tonight. It'll be interesting to see if Warzycha has the guts to put him in the starting lineup.
-Weather a factor? It's going to be pretty cold out there in Columbus, multiple tweets from FC Dallas players have said so. I'm not really sure if it would be a positive or a negative at this point, just something to keep in mind.
Keys to the game
-Get Chavez space. There's just no doubt that the FC Dallas offense runs the smoothest when the attack is flowing through Chavez. Eddie Gaven doesn't even begin to have the speed to keep up with Chavez outside...Get Marvin running at Gaven and Balchan with the ball and I think Dallas will have success.
-Dont panic, trust the system. It's just two games into the season. If Dallas is not winning, there's no need to press and give up a stupid goal. A draw is not necessarily a bad result in this game and while you're looking for three points, Dallas has to remember that Columbus can strike on the counter.
-Play smoothly out of the back. Columbus is a high pressure team and Mendoza/Ekpo are the kind of guys that can steal a sloppy pass and be off to the races. Whoever is in the back four needs to not turn the ball over in dumb situations because it's going to be tough for the Crew to break down Dallas through the run of play.
Where to watch?
If you're in the Dallas County side of things, I recommend heading to either the Allen Wickers or Trinity Hall for this one. Wickers has had a great atmosphere for the games and Trinity Hall is always a good spot to grab a stool and watch the match.
In Fort Worth, the game will be on at Delaney's Pub. I used to go there every now and then during my days at the Fort Worth Cats and it's not a bad place at all for all you Funkytowners.
I think we're going to see an open game tomorrow from two teams who will be focusing on offense after scoring just one goal in two games. I think there's certainly goals in this one and Eric Avila burns Columbus again with a late equalizer.