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FC Dallas vs LA Galaxy: Preview and prediction

Can FCD finally clinch a playoff berth?

Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

For the second straight weekend, FC Dallas can clinch a playoff berth with a win over a Western Conference rival. The LA Galaxy are in town on Sunday for Landon Donovan's final regular season visit to Texas.

LA is coming off a big 3-0 win last weekend over Toronto FC. The Galaxy are hoping to keep pace with Seattle in the Supporters' Shield race.

These two sides have met twice this season, with LA coming out on top in both meetings 2-1.

FC Dallas Notes:

Injury report:

Out: George John (knee), Hendry Thomas (ACL tear),

Questionable (but not on the official report): Mauro Diaz (hamstring)

International duty. The Galaxy will be without Robbie Keane, who has scored five goals in his last three games, due to international call‐ups. Omar Gonzalez, Landon Donovan and Oscar Sorto will also be game‐time decisions for LA while Dallas will be without the services of Blas Perez. Je‐Vaughn Watson and Raul Fernandez are expected to be a game-time decision.

Michel's effect. According to the club's game notes, in the 13 matches in which Michel has logged 90 minutes this season, the Brazilian set piece specialist has scored seven goals and has three assists. Since July 19, Michel has played a role in 14 of Dallas' last 21 goals.

Homegrown minutes. Victor Ulloa became the first Homegrown player in Dallas history to play over 2,000 minutes in a single season last match. Moises Hernandez will become the third player to reach 1,000 minutes in a single season in his next match. Ulloa and Kellyn Acosta (1,004 MP in 2013) were the first two.

Consecutive starts. FC Dallas head coach Oscar Pareja has only started the same group in back-to‐back games twice this season (4/12 & 5/31). Once this season (5/4), Pareja was forced to make five changes to the lineup (the most so far this season). Including U.S. Open Cup matches (4) Zach Loyd (26), Victor Ulloa (23) and Raul Fernandez (11) have started consecutive matches (minimum of 10).

Quick Notes:

REFEREE: Alan Kelly. SAR (bench): Jonathan Johnson; JAR (opposite): Eric Weisbrod; 4th: Juan Guzman
MLS Career: 14 games; FC/gm: 26.4; Y/gm: 2.9; R: 5; pens: 4

SUSPENDED: LA: Marcelo Sarvas (caution accumulation; through Oct. 12)
WARNINGS:
SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: DAL: Victor Ulloa, Je-Vaughn Watson ... LA: Omar Gonzalez
SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: DAL: Fabian Castillo, Matt Hedges, Blas Perez, Adam Moffat, Michel ...
LA: Baggio Husidic, A.J. DeLaGarza, Alan Gordon, Landon Donovan, Juninho
DISABLED LIST: DAL: Hendry Thomas (season-ending injury)
INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: DAL: Blas Perez (Panama, vs. Mexico, Oct. 12), Je-Vaughn Watson (Jamaica, vs.
Japan, Oct. 10); Raul Fernandez (Peru, vs. Chile 10/10; vs. Guatemala 10/14) ... LA: Robbie Keane (Republic of
Ireland, vs. Gibraltar, Oct. 11; vs. Germany, Oct. 14); Omar Gonzalez, Landon Donovan (USA, vs. Ecuador, Oct. 10);
Oscar Sorto (U.S. U-23)

HEAD-TO-HEAD
ALL-TIME (62 meetings): FC Dallas 20 wins (1 shootout), 82 goals... Galaxy 31 wins (1 shootout), 111 goals ... Ties 11
AT DALLAS (30 meetings): FC Dallas 15 wins (0 shootout), 51 goals ... Galaxy 8 wins (0 shootout), 45 goals ... Ties 7

Coaches record: Bruce Arena vs. DAL: P25 W14 L8 T4 ... Oscar Pareja vs. LA: P8 W2 L5 T1

Prediction:

You win your home games. That is the motto the club has had for some time this season and it continues to be the big motto going into this game. Both teams are going to be missing key players and it will be doubly interesting to see how many minutes Donovan gets in this game after having US national team duty on Friday. I'd imagine he'll come off the bench at the very least, if not start right away.

I still think LA has way more talent even without Keane in the lineup. They are unbeaten in their last 10 and continue to look stronger each week. They have struggled on the road and I think FCD could trip them up here. But given how poorly the team played last week in Vancouver and the absence of Perez, I think a draw seems fitting here.

FC Dallas 1, LA 1

What do you think the score will be? Sound off below in the comments section.