We're getting closer and closer to playoff time and FC Dallas continues to pick up points when it matters most.
DAL - Blas Perez (PK) 56
FC Dallas - Raul Fernandez, Jair Benitez (Kellyn Acosta 46), Matt Hedges, Zach Loyd, Je-Vaughn Watson, Fabian Castillo (Ryan Hollingshead 79), Victor Ulloa, Adam Moffat, Andres Escobar, David Texeira (Tesho Akindele 46), Blas Perez.
Substitutes Not Used: Chris Seitz, Coy Craft, Walker Zimmerman, Michel.
Total Shots: 9 (Blas Perez 5) Shots on Goal: 3 (Fabian Castillo, Blas Perez, Andres Escobar 1); Fouls: 13 (Adam Moffat 3); Offsides: 2 (Fabian Castillo 2); Corners: 3 (Andres Escobar 3); Saves: 1 (Raul Fernandez 1).
Colorado Rapids - Clint Irwin, Christopher Klute, Zat Knight, Jared Watts, Marvell Wynne, Marlon Hairston, Nick LaBrocca, Dillon Powers (Davy Armstrong 81), John Neeskens, Deshorn Brown (Charles Eloundou 89), Vicente Sanchez (Gabriel Torres 57).
Substitutes Not Used: Joe Nasco, Carlos Alvarez, Edson Buddle, Dillon Serna.
Total Shots: 6 (Deshorn Brown, Marlon Hairston 2); Shots on Goal: 1 (Dillon Powers 1); Fouls: 14 (Jared Watts, Dillon Powers 3); Offsides: 2 (Deshorn Brown 2); Corners: 3 (Dillon Powers, Vicente Sanchez, Gabriel Torres 1); Saves: 2 (Clint Irwin 2).
DAL - Jair Benitez (caution) 41
COL - Jared Watts (caution) 56
COL - Zat Knight (caution) 65
DAL - Adam Moffat (caution) 73
COL - Jared Watts (caution) 79
COL - Jared Watts (ejection) 79
Referee: Hilario Grajeda
Referee's Assistants: Frank Anderson, Bill Dittmar
Fourth Official: Daniel Radford
Time of Game: 1:53
Weather: Sunny, 63 degrees
FC Dallas head coach Oscar Pareja
General thoughts on the match...
I was really worried about this game. The urgency of this game was much different for the teams. We needed to get three points. A tie didn't work for us. Having the responsibility to gain three points was tough considering we just played another important game against LA last weekend. Today was one of those games where you can get exposed. I have to say that Colorado played a very good game. They came out sharp and gave us a lot of trouble, especially in the first half. In the second half, I thought we were able to control the game. The changes we made with two players enabled us to level the game. We created a couple of changes and handled [Colorado] better.
On the Rapids struggles this season...
The friends that I have here and the club, the way they treated me, the players and everything that I left here after two years... All of it was incredible. For me, I will always wish the best for [the Rapids], the group of players they have here. They're working hard. Things will turn around for the club. They have people in the locker room capable of doing the job. It was a rough first season [in Colorado] for me. The second season, with the youngsters... Those guys exposed us [FC Dallas] a bit here today. You have to be patient.
On Tesho Akindele...
Coming here to Denver was special for Tesho. I wanted him so bad to score but he works very hard. I thought what he did in the second half was great. I'm proud of him. He is all heart. He is committed to the tactical work. Normally, I play him as a striker but today I needed his work rate on the flank. It worked well. When he has chances, he puts the ball away and that makes him special.
On moving into third place in the Western Conference...
It was our goal today. Getting three points was crucial. Having it in our control, going against Portland at home next weekend in Frisco will be good. Our boys deserve it.
On the second half changes...
We had a whole in the middle. Nick [LaBrocca] and Dillon [Powers] were causing us problems. I had two strikers, but there was a huge gap there. We filled that gap in the second half. It made us less aggressive up front but it gave us control. We told the guys at half to get control of the game and to be patient. The kids needed to learn how to win games like this.
On Zach Loyd...
Zach is becoming a great leader for us. I thought his performance today, against one of the best strikers in the league, Deshorn Brown, was very good. He did a phenomenal job.
FC Dallas forward Tesho Akindele
On coming back to Colorado to play...
Last year I was in the crowd here, watching the games. It is kind of weird to be on the other side of it now. I had people I've known my whole life, here watching me, chanting and yelling my name... It was a really good day for me.
On the changes the team made at halftime...
We changed the formation up a bit at halftime but it was just a scrappy game all around. Neither team had too many chances. It was just one of those games.
On being a Rookie of the Year candidate...
Everyone here is a competitive person, that's part of being a professional athlete. Any type of professional award or recognition you can get... I'm obviously going for it. I cannot just focus on that though I'm more focused on the team.
On playing for Oscar Pareja...
It's great. He is obviously very good with young players. Last season, here in Colorado, he had a lot of success with young players, Homegrown players, and even guys like Fabian Castillo. There are a lot of young players that he has confidence in so its definitely good to have a guy like him, that has your back.
FC Dallas defender Matt Hedges
General thoughts on the match...
We did what we came here to do. We got the three points but it wasn't pretty. We didn't play that well. At the end of the day, we're walking out with three points in third place and that was our goal. We didn't really care how it looked...
On being in third place...
It's huge. Salt Lake had a chance to secure third place last night, but they ended up drawing against Portland so we understood that three points for us here would put us in a really good spot. That's what we did. Now it's in our control. We control our own destiny and that is a good feeling.
On Blas Perez...
He brings a lot of confidence and experience. He is one of the leaders on our team. It was good for him to get that penalty kick goal. He struggled a bit this season on penalties but everyone on the team was confident he would put it away when he stepped up to take it today.