The last regular season game of the season had arrived. It was a bitter-sweet moment, as it seemed like only a couple months ago the season opener was upon us. Along with the bittersweetness, there was an air of excitement with playoffs on the horizon and the Supporters Shield being contested.
The Pitch, Fans, and Ejections
First off, man was that pitch sorry. That field did not look like it was doing FC Dallas any favors at all with the muddiness and choppiness of it. Especially along both sidelines and the middle of the pitch. Soccer lines on the field, it looked like it was used the night before, or even that very same day. Some of the passing fluidity shown a couple weeks ago against Vancouver was not there, and it looked like the grass (or lack of it) had something to do with it.
The fans were passionate, and their numbers respectable for the league. There were some trouble makers however. A couple of fans in the front 2 rows caught a ball bouncing out of bounds and did not immediately return it. One of them got out a red sharpie and signed the ball, and let his buddies also sign the ball before giving it back to the ball boy. Unfortunately, in this process, they decided to showboat what they were doing and security got to them. I believe the jist of what the security team accused them of was 'defacing FC Dallas property'. A little harsh, and hopefully they'll be able to return for playoffs as they've been a passionate bunch all year.
Supporters Shield Race
I will readily admit I was salty even though we won the game. Boo me if you want, but that was one of the emptiest wins I've experienced there at Toyota Stadium. Coming into this game, there was a small glimmer of hope that the New York Giants were going to be the only New York team to punch me right in the heart.
New York went up 0-2, and then Chicago pulled one back right before FC Dallas scored the winner against San Jose. It felt like there was hope in the air! Then, it happened, FC Dallas winning 2-1, Chicago only down by a goal and the beer garden erupted in a random cheer. My heart leapt! I kept refreshed my iPhone app, hoping and hoping to see the notification for 2-2 in Chicago...that notification never came...
My most exciting player to watch this game has to go to Matt, the tower of Rochester, the stalwart of UNC, the mightiest of the mighty Hedges! He looked absolutely ready for the playoffs as he bossed that defense and stepped in several times in dangerous situations. Kept Chris Wondolowski out of the net, and Matias Perez Garcia was also kept under wraps. Great game for our captain.
And finally, your fan quote of the night: 'Aw man look at this guy, number 11, he's really good with the ball at his feet. Oh, well not that time...' - A fan behind me that would compliment an FC Dallas player and tell his kids to look at the player with the ball at his feet...only for that player to have the ball taken from him several times that game. The timing was hilarious.
Who all went to the game on Sunday? Did anyone else keep checking their phone to see if New York somehow slipped up? Anyone not care at all about the Supporters Shield? Let me know in the comments below!