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Observations from FC Dallas’ 2-0 win over the Philadelphia Union

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Maxi Urruti loses and wins back his starting spot, and Jimmy Maurer has clinched the MLS Save of the Year award.

MLS: Philadelphia Union at FC Dallas Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

FC Dallas continues to build momentum after getting the needed home result while experimenting with its starting lineup to continue to look for the best fit for this team. From incredible goalkeeping by both teams’ keepers, to Santiago Mosquera’s energetic performance, to Maxi Urruti finding the back of net, there was a lot to take away from this match.

Urruti loses then wins back his starting spot

Urruti was a rare absence from FC Dallas’ starting lineup. Although Urruti is not often left out of the starting 11, it is not a complete surprise that Oscar Pareja opted to pull Urruti out of the lineup for this game, and to keep Cristian Colman in it as FC Dallas’ striker. What will be a surprise will be if Urruti is not in the lineup next week.

The reason for Urruti not starting this game is that he had a few games where he was not influential or productive, including last week, in New England. Colman has been playing with some new confidence, and earned the chance to play over Urruti in this game against Philadelphia to see if he could get himself a goal. In overall play, Colman was not bad, but he did not do his most important task, which was to get on the scoresheet. Urruti came in with energy, and immediately scored. FC Dallas needs a striker that can score, and now it should be expected that Urruti leapfrog over Colman in priority for a starting spot next week.

Implementing Mosquera into the lineup was a success

There were two strikers in the lineup this week with the absence of Mauro Diaz, and the other part of the reason Maxi Urruti was not starting is Santiago Mosquera. Pareja decided to start Mosquera, but he could not take Roland Lamah out because of how good he has been this year, and he also decided to keep Michael Barrios in. Mosquera and Lamah swapped between playing in the left midfield and playing as a forward.

Mosquera may not have found the net, but in his shift, he was more active than anybody else on the field. He made several dangerous runs, and he played a couple dangerous balls to Cristian Colman. He also shot some dangerous shots on goal. One of those shots forced would have found the top left corner if Andre Blake had not made an incredible diving save.

Lamah’s ability as a creator

The man who played the perfectly paced through ball to Mosquera in the clip above is Roland Lamah, who was not seen at all as a creator last year, but has been a star this year because of his ability to create. He got another assist in this game, and he could have had multiple others. He played the long pass to Barrios that sent him towards goal, and also had a cross across the box to Jacori Hayes that almost resulted in a goal. In the first half, he also had a couple of good crosses from the left side of the box.

Although Lamah did not have many chances to score himself, he still had an excellent game because he was able to create for teammates. This was not something we saw last season. Last season, Lamah had good games when he scored during the game, and only because he scored.

Jimmy Maurer clinches MLS Save of the Year award

FC Dallas’ 3rd shutout of the season featured the team’s second shutout in a row. This streak is still alive because of this double save that will surely win MLS Save of the Year for 2018.

The look on the face of CJ Sapong says it all.

MLS: Philadelphia Union at FC Dallas Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

FC Dallas has been playing as a team this year, with many players playing their parts and contributing to the squad as a whole. It has given Pareja options to work with, and a bench full of quality players despite the long injury list. Players like Lamah, Urruti, and Mosquera are going to be important pieces to this team later in the year, and it sure is nice to have a high-quality goalkeeper in Maurer anchor the team from the back.