FCD emerge as kings of the hill
In the most anticipated match of the weekend, FC Dallas came away with a scrappy 1-0 victory against the Los Angeles Galaxy. The win extends FCD's home winning streak to four games, tying the longest in team history (set in 1996), and left the Hoops with the best record in Major League Soccer at the end of the night.
Roberto Mina capitalized on a mistake by Tyrone Marshall as he took the ball from him cleanly in the 32nd minute and was able to beat Kevin Hartman for the game winner. It was the second goal of the season for the Ecuador international as FC Dallas coach Colin Clarke looks for solutions to replace the injured Eddie Johnson and Carlos Ruiz.
"He's a good player," said Clarke. "He needs to keep working hard and get his fitness and get used to the weather and everything like that, but I thought he was great tonight."
In a game with many chances, Mina created his goal by himself and it turned out to be the key to the match.
"He's a big strong boy," said Ronnie O'Brien. "Great finish tonight -- you know he's cool on the ball and he put it in the net, all credit to him."
Arturo Alvarez had the game's most dangerous chance in the second half as Mina found him up the middle with a quick through ball. Alvarez took too much time and was unable to take a shot.
"I think I did one extra move that I shouldn't have," said Alvarez. "Little things like that I've got to work on and next time hopefully I can put it in."
"Got to learn to finish it," said Clarke. "He was great lively, buzzing, getting the ball and now he's got to have an end product. He's got to have something at the end of all the work."
At the other end of the park, in the second half the Galaxy began to create more chances, forcing both Greg Vanney and Clarence Goodson into fouls that earned them both yellow cards. Goodson especially played with fire, getting into a few scuffles even carrying the caution.
"It's going to happen," said Clarke. "He's competitive, he's a defender -- he's supposed to get yellow cards."
Greg Vanney did well to organize his young back line, this week featuring Drew Moor, who made his first career start.
Moor didn't look out of place as Bobby Rhine was moved out of the right back spot. It was a pretty big challenge for a rookie, making his first start in a match of this importance against the likes of Landon Donovan and Cobi Jones.
"I found out Thursday that I would be starting," said Moor. "And I've been thinking about them ever since then. I tried to stay focused on the way I play, stay organized with Clarence and try to keep everything organized and everything in front of me and try to kill any chances they had."
Goodson himself isn't terribly full of experience, starting since opening day in just his second year in the league.
"I thought Drew did great," said Goodson. "He stepped in and did a really good job, he's a very good player and I think that showed tonight."
Scott Joiner is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.