Dallas still searching for winning form
Carlos Ruiz scored his 10th goal of the season Saturday night for FC Dallas, but it wasn't enough as the New England Revolution came out on top 2-1 at Pizza Hut Park.
Wholesale changes in the FCD lineup gave the team a different level of intensity to start. Steve Jolley and Carey Talley both adding a combined 15 years of MLS experience to the lineup.
But the once again the mighty Hoops slipped back into their subpar play following the opening goal by Clint Dempsey in the 33rd minute.
"It's very disappointing," said coach Colin Clarke. "The result last week didn't go our way but we got a point out of it. We come in here tonight and the same thing happens, we give up a goal late on what's that their first shot on goal in the second half? I don't know. But it flies into the bottom corner. We're snake bitten at the minute, we just have to stay together and work hard and turn it around."
For the second week in a row the Hoops were beaten by a sly shot from outside the box, as Shalrie Joseph sent in a tough shot on the ground that tagged the inside of the far post for the game winner in the 80th minute.
"There's two or three players around him, he should have never got the shot off," said a frustrated Ronnie O'Brien. "Every week it's a mistake from a couple of players, be it me or someone else. No one is going to point fingers, but every week two or three players are making a mistake and we're getting punished for it."
That scenario has played out as small mental lapses have cost the team over the current six game slide.
"I just think we're not in it mentally," said Jeff Cassar. "We're tuning in and out of the games, good teams can't do that. You get scored on when you make mistakes."
Two early yellow cards may have played a part as O'Brien was carded in the 31st minute and Simo Valakari received one of his own in the 39th.
Both players form the heart of the Dallas midfield as both have held the team together with the recent national team call-ups and injuries.
"Not really," said Valakari on whether the early yellow card effected his play. "It wasn't our best game today, it's no excuse to get the yellow card early. Of course you have to be cautious not to get another stupid foul, but still we should play better, there's no excuse."
Scott Joiner is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.