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Thoughts on FC Dallas vs Toronto FC

A road win and shutout is exactly what the doctor ordered to give FC Dallas an energy boost after a loss of points to the Vancouver Whitecaps.

MLS: FC Dallas at Toronto FC Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

A road win and shutout is exactly what the doctor ordered after FC Dallas’ loss of points to the Vancouver Whitecaps last weekend. FC Dallas used a strategy of defending and counterattacking (with the help of some Jesse Gonzalez magic) to get the best of Toronto FC and put the Vancouver match in the rear-view mirror.

Putting the Vancouver game into the past.

Road draws are good and all, but a road win can do wonders to a team’s confidence, and this win should help FC Dallas focus forward. Keeping a one-goal lead away against Toronto FC is tough. It is much easier to give away than a two-goal edge at home against the Vancouver Whitecaps. Even though on paper a tie would have been a respectable result, there was an added importance for FC Dallas to keep Toronto from tying the the match at the end. It would have served as a harsh reminder both of the collapse a week previous, and of FC Dallas’ relative lack of wins this season. While it took FC Dallas seven yellow cards (four related to time wasting) to get it, they held the 1-0 result.

Possession is not everything.

Both sides had strong attacks at goal, and the game’s result was not, in my opinion, an unfair one from the play on the field. The possession stat shows that possession is not always an indication of a better side. It was 70%-30% in favor of Toronto. This stat is a by-product of FC Dallas playing defensively in a counterattacking style and eventually bunkering up. This was the necessary strategy to deploy, and it is not a negative indication of FC Dallas’ play in this game.

It is unlikely that FC Dallas would find success with this lineup and strategy in home games, where FC Dallas needs to find ways to consistently score goals. They will need to find ways to pick up all three points at home, but it is viable for road games, and has so far been working to keep FC Dallas contending well while they figure out ways to be more consistent at home.