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CCL Recap: Dallas struggle in 1-1 home draw with Tauro

FRISCO, Texas — It wasn’t pretty, and in the end it wasn’t the result FC Dallas wanted as visiting Tauro FC of Panama came to Pizza Hut Park and snuck out with a 1-1 draw in CONCACAF Champions League play on Wednesday night.

FCD got on the board right after kickoff after Daniel Cruz collected a ball from Jackson in the Tauro box and poked home a shot from eight yards just 27 seconds into the match.

The goal unofficially marked the fastest-ever goal in CCL history, passing Pachuca’s Paul Aguilar, who once scored a goal 46 seconds into a match.

Tauro FC responded with a barrage of first-half shots, however, including a pair of dangerous opportunities from Carlos Rodríguez just moments after Cruz’s goal that Dallas ‘keeper Kevin Hartman did well to send out of trouble.

FCD weathered the barrage, though, and looked to have gone up two goals just after the half hour mark when George John headed a ball past Tauro goalkeeper Álvaro Anzola. The assistant referee ruled John offside, but replays showed the defender was a full yard onside.

The call seemed to rattle Dallas, and Tauro began to push for the equalizer in earnest.

The attacking Tauro trio of Rodríguez, Víctor Mendieta and Reinel Herrera caused trouble for the FCD backline — playing in their first game together in just more than a month — and further trouble struck four minutes before halftime. The breakthrough came when Mendieta did well to worm into the box, eventually being brought down by a rash challenge from Ugo Ihemelu after Dallas failed to clear a Juan Barrera cross.

Moreno stepped up and slotted the equalizing penalty just under Hartman’s dive for a 1-1 score line.

Dallas looked reinvigorated to start the second half, and just minutes in, left back Jair Benítez’s cross nearly found Andrew Jacobson at the back post, but the midfielder could not get a body on it. Moments later, Anzola denied Cruz with a reflex save inside his six-yard box.

The bulk of the second half saw each team squander numerous good chances. With the game nearing stoppage time, Tauro’s Rodríguez and Herrera combined well, ending with Herrera taking a rebound in the box from a Rodríguez shot and heading it onto the crossbar and over the FC Dallas goal. Just after that. Maykel Galindo got loose for Dallas, but took a heavy touch to kill his angle on the break.

With the draw, FC Dallas remain atop Group C with seven points while Tauro — following Pumas UNAM's win over Toronto FC on Wednesday night — sit at the bottom with two points through three matches.

FC Dallas stay at Pizza Hut Park for their next group-stage match against Pumas on Sept. 21 while Tauro FC travel to Toronto FC for a match on Sept. 20.