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FC Dallas stumbles 2-0 to Seattle Sounders in playoff opener
An early injury to Alan Velasco set the tone for FC Dallas on the road.
FC Dallas will have to wait for their first playoff win in Seattle as they were downed 2-0 on Monday night in their Round One opener to the Sounders.
Seattle got a penalty kick goal before halftime from Albert Rusnák and then a second half insurance goal from Jordan Morris to seal the victory in the first match of a best-of-three series in Round One of the 2023 MLS Cup Playoffs.
FC Dallas set the tone early in the first half with two golden chances from Jesus Ferreira. The first came off a turnover in the midfield that Paxton Pomykal forced. He played a through ball to Ferreira, who was in on goal in the Sounders’ penalty area, but keeper Stefan Frei saved his shot. The second one was more of the same as Dallas forced a turnover in the midfield, but this time, Ferreira’s open shot on goal was skied over the crossbar.
Seattle drew first blood in the 41st minute as Cristian Roldan drew a foul at the top of the area. The Slovakian international stepped up to the spot and slotted the attempt past Dallas’ Maarten Paes.
Morris doubled the lead for the home side in the 74th minute. Nouhou took the ball up the left flank and sent in a cross that Morris headed home.
Instant Reaction: Tough night overall for FC Dallas, who didn’t bring the proper energy in the second half after going down a goal. The first 30 minutes or so were very open, and for a moment, it appeared they had a shot in this one. But once again, it was the failure to take advantage of those moments, and then a defensive error popped up, and it was game over.
Losing Alan Velasco in the opening 20 minutes to a knee injury was ultimately a killer, too. Nico Estevez said following the game that he will have an MRI on Wednesday to see where things stand.
Thankfully, the new playoff format means that there is no aggregate scoring, so this weekend’s rematch will be a new game for FC Dallas to focus on.
Man of the Match: It felt like a split between Pomykal and Asier Illarramendi.
What is next for FC Dallas: Game two is on Saturday at Toyota Stadium. A win continues the series, a loss ends the season.