FRISCO, Texas — FC Dallas not only got revenge against Real Salt Lake for a weekend loss in league play, but they also secured a spot in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup semifinals by beating their foes 2-0 at Pizza Hut Park on Tuesday night.
A surprise free-kick goal from defender Jair Benítez and a chipped finish from Jackson Gonçalves were more than enough for FCD to come out victorious.
Both teams made several changes to their lineups from Saturday’s game at Rio Tinto.
Real Salt Lake head coach Jason Kreis left forward Álvaro Saborío in Utah and opted to start Luis Gil and Fabián Espíndola up top. Goalkeeper Nick Rimando also stayed behind to nurse an ankle injury in preparation for RSL’s trip to Vancouver this weekend.
FC Dallas head coach Schellas Hyndman started reserves Eric Avila, Ricardo Villar and Bruno Guarda, while rookie Bobby Warshaw started as the defensive midfielder for the second straight game in place of captain Daniel Hernandez.
Contrary to Saturday night’s showdown — in which Real Salt Lake dominated the scoring opportunities — it was FC Dallas who went on the offense. As a result, they took the early lead in the scoreboard in the 18th minute.
After Avila drew a foul 25 yards away from Kyle Reynish’s goal, both Villar and Benítez stood over the ball, but it was the Colombian that ripped a curling left-footed shot past an outstretched Reynish for a 1-0 lead.
The rest of the first half featured chippy play — the teams combined for four yellow cards, two to each side — and several deep runs from Espíndola into the FCD defensive third, all to no avail.
FC Dallas made one substitution at the restart, sending Jackson forward in place of Marvin Chávez, and Hyndman’s change paid dividends nine minutes into the second-half restart.
Midfielder Eric Alexander played a through ball to Jackson that RSL defender Jámison Olave tried to play offside, but the Brazilian timed it perfectly and gently looped his shot over Reynish for FCD’s second goal.
Real Salt Lake played more aggressively down the stretch and Collen Warner nearly put them on the board in the 74th, but his screamer from distance hit the crossbar and bounced away from danger.
FC Dallas will next face the winner of the LA Galaxy–Seattle Sounders match to be played on Wednesday night.
If the Sounders advance, FCD will travel to Washington; if the Galaxy win, Hyndman’s men will host the league leaders for the right to go to the final.
DAL – Jair Benitez 18
DAL – Jackson (Eric Alexander) 54
RSL – Fabian Espindola (caution; reckless foul) 14
DAL – Jair Benitez (caution; dissent) 37
RSL – Jamison Olave (caution; reckless foul) 40
DAL – Zach Loyd (caution; reckless foul) 45+
DAL – Andrew Wiedeman (caution; delay of game) 87
FC Dallas –- Kevin Hartman, Zach Loyd (Andrew Wiedeman 68), George John, Ugo Ihemelu, Jair Benitez, Eric Alexander, Bruno Guarda, Eric Avila, Ricardo Villar (Brek Shea 64), Bobby Warshaw, Marvin Chavez (Jackson 45).
Substitutes Not Used: Chris Seitz, Milton Rodriguez, Peri Marosevic, Daniel Hernandez.
Real Salt Lake –- Kyle Reynish, Tony Beltran, Jamison Olave, Nat Borchers, Chris Wingert (Collen Warner 58), Kyle Beckerman, Ned Grabavoy (Arturo Alvarez 58), Will Johnson, Andy Williams, Fabian Espindola (Jean Alexandre 66), Luis Gil.
Substitutes Not Used: Tim Melia, Robbie Russell, Chris Schuler, Jean Alexandre, Collen Warner, Nelson Gonzalez, Arturo Alvarez.
Referee: Michael Kennedy
Referee’s Assistants: Jonathan Johnson, Adam Garner
4th Official: Matthew Foerster
Weather: Partly Cloudy, 97 degrees