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FC Dallas vs Real Salt Lake: What to watch for

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Dallas heads to RSL in what is on paper a very winnable game.

MLS: FC Dallas at Real Salt Lake Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

Is this the dreaded trap game? Or is Real Salt Lake just very beatable at the moment?

Defensive Woes

RSL has the second worst defense in the league with 15 goals conceded. Now admittedly that has shaped up in recent weeks with the hiring of coach Mike Petke, but RSL still seems to be meandering through a rough patch. Their squad leaves a lot to be desired in the first team and is seriously lacking depth.

To compound their host of issues, RSL will be missing five defenders this week, their three best center backs and Nick Rimando and Kyle Beckerman are both listed as questionable after being injured. This is a banged up side that is missing swathes of its’ team. There will likely never be a better time to play RSL away.

How does FCD lineup?

Dallas lineup is finally starting to write itself, but where the pieces fit is still a bit of a puzzle. Tesho Akindele is playing well and has earned his place. Michael Barrios should not be on the bench. Roland Lamah is starting to improve, while Javier Morales fails to impress. Does this team lineup with three wingers? Does Papi go back to the 4-4-2 and put Akindele up top with Urruti? Going by performance, that would be the most likely lineup, but Papi has been shirking that lately in favor of a system. Maybe this is the perfect game to get Cristian Colman a confidence goal?

He seems to like Barrios off the bench and running in that 4-3-3 which as of yet has failed to provide the spark of magic this team is looking for. The lineup Papi goes with in this game will potentially speak volumes of his intention going forward.

A 15 Goal a Year Striker.

At his current rate, Maxi Urruti is set to finally do what Dallas fans have been asking for years and lead the team with a 15 goal season. he has four goals and one assist in seven games and has shown so much spark this season. He has kicked on and taken control on numerous occasions where Dallas wasn’t at their best.

A weakened RSL team is the perfect opportunity for Urruti to control a game and run rampant against an already porous defense. For my money he has been the most exciting player on the team this season and without him this team is in a much stickier position.

What can he get up to on Saturday?