FC Dallas Notes:
450. That is the amount of time since the last FC Dallas goal, and the more this game goes on without a goal, the larger that streak will get to. Oh, and it is a 2013 season high for any MLS team too.
100 club. With his start in Seattle, David Ferreira is now the newest member of the FCD 100 club, joining Jair Benitez, George John, and Kenny Cooper who have all hit the century mark this season.
Production up front. From the big three for FC Dallas (Blas Perez, Kenny Cooper, and Eric Hassli), FC Dallas ranks near the bottom of the league in goals from forwards with just nine total. Only three other clubs have scored fewer goals from their strikers than Dallas this season. That has to change fast in order to make the playoffs.
The Galaxy have been doing fairly well in league play as of late. They are 4-3-0 in their last seven with one of those wins over Dallas last month at the StubHub Center.
The last week and a half, the Galaxy have been involved in the International Champions Cup, going up against the likes of Real Madrid, AC Milan and Juventus. LA ended that tournament with a fourth place finish, despite only winning one game (over Juventus).
How LA responds to the three-games in seven days stretch of that tournament with a trip to the heat in Dallas, followed up by their first group stage game in the CONCACAF Champions League will be interesting to see. LA is very much in the thick of things in the Western Conference and knows that Dallas is chasing them in the standings.
The big thing for LA right now is the fact that they have a healthy Robbie Keane and a resurgent Landon Donovan playing together again. This is about the time of the year where those two get on the same page and ride out a title run. It won't be shocking to see them begin doing a similar thing now that August has rolled around on the calendars.
Bruce Arena has done well with his mix of young players like Gyasi Zardes and Jose Villarreal along with the veterans in the back like Dallas-native Omar Gonzalez. His 4-4-2 set-up is pretty straight forward as it relies on the two holding midfielders in the middle of the park to lock everything down while the wings and forwards take care of business up front.
Goalkeeper: Carlo Cudicini; RB: Sean Franklin, CB: Omar Gonzalez, A.J. DeLaGarza, LB: Todd Dunivant; RM: Landon Donovan; CM: Marcelo Sarvas, Juninho; LM: Robbie Rogers FW: Robbie Keane, Gyasi Zardes
Keys to Three Points:
Keep Keane at bay. One way for Dallas to win this game is to slow down what Keane is able to do in the attack for LA. That may also mean keeping a watchful eye out for Donovan as well but the last meeting between these two sides, Keane destroyed the back four for Dallas. He's healthy again, which only means he'll be dangerous. George John needs to have a big evening to keep the Galaxy off the boards.
Spread them out. I haven't brought this point up in a little while but it is time to get back to it. When Dallas goes wide in their attack, good things happen.
Aggressive up front. Along with the extra width up front in the attack is also some aggressive play out of the midfield and forwards. Dallas has to come into this game with a sense of urgency. Taking risks and chances up front is key as it will either wake up their offense or at least give them some confidence going forward that they can score again.
Don't fall asleep. A final key here is to not allow the Galaxy anything on their counter attacks. LA will likely sit back some in this one early on in hopes of Dallas pressing forward a bunch. Dallas also can't commit too many numbers forward on set pieces as well, because the Galaxy will take advantage of those chances.
I won't beat around the bush here, I'm not expecting three points in this one. I know I've said before that you should always win your home games and I still believe that but given how poorly this club has shown over the last month and a half (I'm willing to give them a pass for June), they have to show me something before I can start feeling confident about picking them to win again. But hey, that may just be me. I do think they'll end the goalless streak this weekend though.
LA 2, Dallas 1
What score are you predicting for tomorrow's game? Let's hear it in the comments below.