Weekly update: Sweep-seekers
RUIZ AND CO. LOOK TO SWEEP PAST UNITED: FC Dallas will look to complete the season sweep of DC United when it comes to Frisco on Saturday night. The two sides last did battle on August 27 in a U.S. Open Cup quarterfinal in Germantown, Md. with FC Dallas coming out on top that night, snatching a 4-1 victory on penalty kicks following 120 minutes of action that ended with the score tied 1-1.
Carlos Ruiz scored the Hoops lone goal on that night and he will be back in action on Saturday for his club side after missing last weekend's game while on international duty with Guatemala. His goal-scoring exploits, he has scored four of Dallas' five goals at Pizza Hut Park, were missed against the Earthquakes as FCD was shutout at home for the first time all year.
If Ruiz can grab a goal in his fourth straight home match, he would move back into a tie for the MLS lead in goals scored with suspended United forward Jamie Moreno.
Ruiz also played a pivotal role in the two sides' first meeting, a 2-0 FCD victory at RFK Stadium on May 28, scoring a pair of second half goals. Ruiz's first strike on the night was an acrobatic overhead kick off of a deft Roberto Mina cross that was later named Sierra Mist Goal of the Week. He then killed off the game with a 56th minute penalty kick for his first multi-goal game as a member of FC Dallas.
You can catch Ruiz and the rest of his FC Dallas teammates live on English Radio (KFCD - 990 AM with Ray Canevari) and Spanish Radio (Radio AYO - 1540 AM with Carlos Alvarado and Jesus Padilla.) This game can also be seen live on television through the MLS Direct Kick package.
Wednesday, September 7: 9:30 a.m. @ Pizza Hut Park
Thursday, September 8: 9:30 a.m. @ Pizza Hut Park
Friday, September 9: 9:30 a.m. @ Pizza Hut Park
Saturday, September 10: FC Dallas (10-8-6, 36 points) vs. D.C. United (12-9-5, 41 points) at 7:30 p.m. (CDT)
* Schedule is subject to change.
HOUSE OF PAIN: Following Saturday night's loss to San Jose, FC Dallas is now winless in its first four games at the newly-built Pizza Hut Park. Of the teams that play in soccer-specific stadiums (Chivas USA, Columbus, FC Dallas and Los Angeles) only Chivas has had a home winless streak longer than the Hoops current one, while playing in their current stadiums. In 2000 and 2003 the Crew went four home matches without a win, going 0-3-1 and 0-1-3 respectively, but they have never played five straight matches at Columbus Crew Stadium without picking up the full three points.
Since moving into The Home Depot Center in June 2003, the Galaxy have never gone three-straight games at home without a win. However, Chivas set the record earlier this season when they played six straight home games at The Home Depot Center without picking up a victory. Following its 1-0 victory over Real Salt Lake on May 7, Chivas went 0-4-2 at home before again knocking off Real, its fellow expansion team, by the score of 5-1 on July 9.
In order to avoid matching that mark, FC Dallas would need a victory either this weekend against DC United or next Sunday, September 18 against Real Salt Lake.
JOHNSON AND VANNEY BACK TO NATS: Eddie Johnson and Greg Vanney each left the Lone Star State following Saturday night's defeat to rejoin Bruce Arena and the U.S. National Team before its game in Guatemala on Wednesday. Both players were released from National Team camp in Columbus late last week and played 90 minutes for the Hoops against San Jose, but are now part of Arena's 18-man roster that traveled to Guatemala on Monday. Both are expected to feature in Wednesday's match.
CAPTAIN SIMO TO SIT: As a result of his 22nd minute yellow card on Saturday, FC Dallas captain Simo Valakari will now be suspended for this weekend's game with DC United. The yellow card was the sixth of the season for Valakari, who leads MLS with 68 fouls committed so far this season, placing him in a three-way tie for the most cautions on the team along with Clarence Goodson and Ronnie O'Brien.
GOING TO A GOOD CAUSE: Five FC Dallas players are having their jerseys from Saturday night auctioned off in order to raise money for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. Major League Soccer's Hurricane Relief Online Auction began on Saturday night with representatives of all 12 MLS clubs as well as the U.S. and Mexican National Teams offering the shirt off their backs for a good cause.
As of Tuesday morning, Ronnie O'Brien had the high bid amongst the FC Dallas contingent at $530 with those of Scott Garlick, Oscar Pareja, Simo Valakari and Greg Vanney all going for over $200.
All auctions, which are run in conjunction with MLB Auctions, will remain open until Monday, September 12 at 11 a.m. (CDT) with all funds being distributed to programs designed to support the victims of Hurricane Katrina.
FC DALLAS WEEKLY TAKES OVER DAVE AND BUSTER'S IN FRISCO: Please join us this Thursday night for the weekly FC Dallas Radio Show with Ray Canevari on KFCD 990 AM. "FC Dallas Weekly" airs every Thursday from 6 - 7 p.m. on KFCD. This Thursday Canevari and KFCD will once again take the show to Dave and Buster's at the Stonebriar Mall in Frisco. Canevari is scheduled to preview Saturday night's game against DC United with interviews with Head Coach Colin Clarke defender Steve Jolley and a United player while also looking ahead to next Wednesday's all-important U.S. Open Cup Semifinal against Chicago with Fire play-by-play announcer Kenn Tommach.