FRISCO, Texas — Even without rising star forward Fabián Castillo, FC Dallas found their offense Saturday night.
Questions arose around FC Dallas as to who would step in for Castillo while he trains in Colombia for the U-20 World Cup, but there was no questioning the team offense as they thrashed the Portland Timbers, 4-0, at Pizza Hut Park.
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“I think all of our players really stepped up tonight,” said FC Dallas head coach Schellas Hyndman in his postgame press conference. “I think everybody had a good game, and I think we need those type of performances to continue to get those three points.”
FC Dallas had 21 shot attempts—10 of which were on-goal—and they kept the Timbers in their defensive third consistently throughout the 90 minutes.
Hyndman made two changes for FC Dallas and the results were instantaneous. In his first change, he shifted free-kick duties duties from Marvin Chávez to captain Daniel Hernandez, who had two assists on corner kicks after finding Zach Loyd and George John in the first half.
Loyd’s 33rd-minute goal was the first of his MLS career, and five minutes later John muscled past forward Kenny Cooper to score his second of the 2011 campaign.
“There are dangerous players on set-pieces that we haven’t taken advantage of,” Hernandez told reporters after the game. “I was just glad to get them some services tonight.”
In his second change, Hyndman moved Jackson Gonçalves to midfield, which provided the Brazilian with more confidence as an attacker in FCD’s 4-5-1 formation. Jackson almost scored his second goal in as many weeks, though his long-range shot was headed over the line by Home Grown player Ruben Luna.
“He was a player that when we brought him from Brazil, he was a midfielder,” stated Hyndman. “Probably his best position is flank midfield and tonight he really showed it.”
Jackson roamed freely, both from the left and the right of midfield, oftentimes switching sides with opposite player Brek Shea.
“There were several guys that had really excellent games tonight,” Hernandez said. “I thought, as a whole, we all played a great game and we just kept putting pressure on Portland. It’s a tough place to play with the heat and I thought everybody that participated did a great job.”
The last time FC Dallas scored more than three goals was on Sept. 12, 2009, when they netted six goals against the LA Galaxy.
“Determination was our key word tonight,” added Hyndman. “We had to be more determined than they were.”