FC Dallas broke a seven-year winless streak at Children’s Mercy Park, behind a Herculean effort by the most diminutive player on the field. FC Dallas would leave Kansas City with a huge 3-2 statement win. The kind of win, that tells teams across MLS, that FC Dallas is a serious title contender this year.
For rating purposes, 6 is the rating for an average MLS performance.
Man of the Match
Michael Barrios (9.0) - Michael has had a disappointing season, and came into this game without scoring a single goal. That would all change early in the first half:
Michael’s first goal of the season, gave FCD the lead, and made every FCD fan hope that it would open the scoring floodgates for Barrios. That it did:
Micheal’s second goal (of the game and the season), regained the lead for FCD. He wasn’t done yet, and it wasn’t long before he secured the three points for FCD:
Michael Barrios completes his hat-trick!!! Scoreless before tonight, but now he's scored all 3 goals as #FCDallas lead 3-1! Shambolic defending by #SportingKC, punished by Barrios. #SKCvFCD #SKCvDAL #FCD #MLS pic.twitter.com/jrLeW96ozh— Jason Foster (@JogaBonito_USA) July 29, 2018
This is hopefully the breakout game that Michael needed. Should Barrios continue to finish his chances in front of the net going forward, FC Dallas will be far tougher to derail come playoff time.
Those goals were so good, you just have to see them all again, in slow mo:
Jesse Gonzalez (5.8) - Jesse, despite the win, continues to struggle in front of the net. He would face only four shots on goal, finishing with two saves, and allowed two goals. If that wasn’t enough, Jesse finished with a dreadful 34.5% passing accuracy. At this point, the backline is saving Jesse’s bacon.
Matt Hedges (6.7) - Despite the team allowing two goals, Matt had a huge game. He bailed out the defense on several occasions, and finished with one interception, a game-high nine clearances, three huge blocks, one aerial won, and 75% passing accuracy.
Reto Ziegler (6.4) - Reto didn’t have one of his better games, but he was still pretty solid for the better part of the game. The Swiss-international would finish with one tackle, seven big clearances, one blocked shot, two aerials won, three fouls given, and 78.7% passing accuracy.
Reggie Cannon (6.8) - Being on the road, Reggie was not asked to push forward as much as we are used to seeing him. He was instead tasked with focusing on defense, and as a result, delivered a strong defensive performance. Reggie finished with two tackles, two interceptions, seven clearances, and 81% passing accuracy.
Marquinhos Pedroso (6.3) - What a way to make your MLS debut, in a stadium that has been a house of horrors for FCD. Pedroso had some very shaky moments, and the first goal allowed, was a direct result of miscommunication between Pedroso and Ulloa. Weaved in between those shaky moments, were glimpses of some of the things that Pedroso brings to the table for FCD, as he displayed speed, skill, solid passing, strength, ball control, and a “chip on the shoulder” style of play that FCD has lacked at times. Making your debut while your team breaks a seven-year curse, is not a bad way to start your MLS career.
Victor Ulloa ( 6.4) - Vic had a solid, but quiet night. He finished with one tackle, one interception, two clearances, one foul given, and one aerial won on defense. In the attack, Ulloa had one shot attempt, had one key pass on the first Barrios goal, drew one foul, and finished with 76.5% passing accuracy.
Roland Lamah (7.2) - This is the kind of game we needed to see from Lamah, as he was equally involved in both the defense, and the attack. On defense, Roland pitched in with one tackle, one interception, four clearances, and gave one foul. On offense, Lamah had the assist on Barrios second goal, he also had one shot on goal, two key passes, drew two fouls, won three aerials, and had 68% passing accuracy.
Maximiliano Urruti (7.0) - Maxi was deployed as a false 10 in what amounted to a 4-5-1. This allowed FC Dallas to clog up the center of the pitch, and force SKC wide. The early returns on this move, are quite promising, as Urruti was able to help frustrate the SKC attackers without getting too far out of position (as he is used to doing). Urruti finished with three tackles, one interception, and one foul given on defense. In the attack, he had the assist in Barrios third goal, he managed three shot attempts (one shot on goal), drew three fouls, had one key pass, and finished with 75% passing accuracy.
Tesho Akindele (6.6) - Tesho was listed as the lone forward, in the 4-5-1, but promptly switched places with Michael Barrios on the wing. Despite very poor passing (48.2%), he would go on to have one of his better games this season. Tesho was strong in the air, with four aerials won, had one shot on goal, completed one of two cross attempts, and pitched in on defense with four defensive actions. It was pretty clear that Tesho and Lamah had a nice rapport going on the left wing, and this may be something for Pareja to build on in the future.
Cristian Colman (5.8), Paxton Pomykal (5.9), Ryan Hollingshead (5.9) - All three players were brought out, simply to kill the game. In the case of Pomykal and Colman, they were simply brought out to get some minutes.
Oscar Pareja (9.0) - Moving Barrios to the lone forward position, was a brilliant move. A move that would help end a seven-year winless streak in Kansas City. Enough said.