FC Dallas recorded yet another home win on Sunday evening at Toyota Stadium with a 2-0 win over Western Conference rivals Vancouver Whitecaps on what was a hot, steamy day in Frisco. The temperatures were at a high 93 degrees, but that wasn't enough to stop Dallas from taking all three points at home again with quickfire second half goals from Kellyn Acosta and Maximiliano Urruti enough to earn FCD a well deserved victory.
A win on a weekend when closest challengers Colorado and LA Galaxy both slipped up saw Dallas extend their lead in the Supporters' Shield race and leaves them on course for a year of historical achievements for the club.
This sort of game exemplified how Dallas' possession game has evolved into an impressive one over time under the tutelage of Oscar Pareja. Vancouver's stubborn defensive block could easily have stifled the Dallas attack and held on for a frustrating goalless draw to take a point on the road, but that fortunately didn't happen. A lot of that goes down to the progression of the team's fluid off-the-ball movement and the play in between the lines, both of which play a key part in breaking down a well organized defense and both of which we stay displayed in the first goal of the match. And once Dallas made the breakthrough on the day before adding a second shortly after, Vancouver never looked like getting back in the game.
Aside from it being a decent offensive display on the day for the team, defensively things were just as good at the back. Vancouver were only able to muster up a single shot on goal which was dealt with easily enough by Chris Seitz and weren't threatening enough going forward to cause any real problems otherwise on the day. FCD captain Matt Hedges called this performance one of the team's best overall of the year afterwards and it'd be hard to disagree when seeing how in control Dallas were both defensively and offensively throughout the entire contest.
Another positive was the low foul count which has been lowering in recent weeks which also saw the team escape any disciplinary problems on the day with no one picking up a booking, which will be important to try to continue going into the final stretch of the regular season and tough games coming up to decide the destiny of the Supporters' Shield.
There may not have been any real standout individual performances on the day as we have been seeing in recent games, but the overall performance of the team was impressive and promising, especially as it has taken place in the midst of a dragged on Fabian Castillo transfer saga which could easily have unsettled some if not handled properly by the coaching staff.
Difficult to report any negative notes from this game as there wasn't any bad points to really take out of it at all this time, which is a rarity. The team won 2-0, kept a clean sheet, kept the foul count low, no one got booked, and controlled the game on both ends of the pitch without too many problems on a very hot day. Perhaps the team could have gotten some more shots on goal, but the two that they got were both taken well and it wasn't easy to manage more against an organized Vancouver defense so it'd be hard to pinpoint that as a criticism. Not really anything bad to look at here in terms of the bigger picture this time around, which is fantastic.
Dallas won't be in MLS action for another two weeks, but will look to make waves in other competitions in the two upcoming matches. First, they'll start their CONCACAF Champions League campaign with a home match against Nicaraguan champions Real Esteli on Thursday before heading to California to face LA Galaxy in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup semifinals the following Wednesday as they look to seal a first USOC final appearance since 2007.