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Behind Enemy Lines: Scouting Vancouver Whitecaps

What does FC Dallas need to do to down the Whitecaps?

MLS: Orlando City SC at Vancouver Whitecaps FC Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

FC Dallas head return home after their exciting 1-1 draw with Colorado. The Vancouver Whitecaps come to Frisco after a 0-0 draw with Houston.

Playoff Scrum

Vancouver are in the thick of it this season. Currently sixth in the west, the Whitecaps are fighting to make the playoffs this season. Perplexingly, the Whitecaps have a mediocre home form again this season, but their away form is decent, and with the game in Frisco, that is what matters. Vancouver will look to edge out another road point after last week’s clean sheet in Houston, which was their first point ever in the State of Texas.

Potential Lineup

Vancouver are missing Christian Dean, Russell Teibert, Kekuta Manneh, Deybi Flores, and Marco Bustos.

GK: David Ousted; LB: Jordan Harvey; CB: Tim Parker, Kendall Waston; RB: Cole Seiler; CM: Matias Laba, Andrew Jacobson, Nicolas Mezquida; RW: Christian Bolanos; LW: Russell Teibert; FW: Masato Kudo.

Key Matchup

Carlos Gruezo vs. Pedro Morales. Pedro Morales is a very creative passer. With right back being Dallas weakest position this season, it is important that Gruezo help shut down movement on the left wing. If Gruezo and whoever plays right back this week can work together and shut out Morales, then Dallas can shut down Vancouver’s biggest threat.

Keys to Three Points

Replacing Fabian.

With Fabian Castillo in Turkey, Dallas will have to begin experimenting with the left wing position. For this game, it is important they play someone with the ability to punish Vancouver and make things happen. My personal vote is Tesho Akindele. Same goes for right back. That position needs work as well.

Be Clinical.

David Ousted is one of the best keepers in the league. He has and can punish Dallas, if they don’t finish their chances. It is imperative they are accurate Saturday night, they can’t afford to miss any opportunity they might get.

Finally, Some Rest.

Dallas has played an arduous month with eight games since June 25th. They emerged with six wins in that span. Now, with some time between games, Dallas needs to settle into the rest of the season, and focus on what they can do to stay atop the Western Conference.

Prediction

Dallas plays well, and Barrios steals the show.

My Prediction: 2-0 FC Dallas.