FRISCO, Texas – What a difference five minutes makes.
In the 78th minute on Saturday night, FC Dallas winger Fabian Castillo was injured in a play in the middle of the pitch, aggravating a knock he had apparently been fighting during the week. Initial indications from training staff made it look like the Colombian attacker might be subbed, but the player returned to the game and in the 83rd minute, scored what proved to be the tying goal in a 1-1 draw against Chivas USA at Toyota Stadium.
“It shows a lot of character,” said FC Dallas midfielder Victor Ulloa. “Obviously, he’s had that injury this whole week. Just for him to push and get back on the field, it was amazing. It shows how much we want it and how much we believe.”
“Today when he was off the field, it was a suggestion from the medical department that we have to take care of him, and he was brave enough to be back because he knew that his team needed him,” said head coach Oscar Pareja. “That just shows the commitment that he has.”
Castillo finished a ball into the area from Jair Benitez as a part of a strong push by FC Dallas to get back the goal they had given up to Marco Delgado in the 60th minute.
“It was a good response,” said defender Matt Hedges. “Right away we started to press a little more.”
FC Dallas were looking to break a four-game losing streak with a home win against a Chivas USA side that has had mixed results so far in league play. It was not meant to be as Delgado's goal was a hill too high to overcome and Castillo’s goal only managed to give Dallas a point.
“Unfortunately we got a tie – it’s a sour tie,” Ulloa said. “We wish we could have gotten more but we’ll take a point. We’ll remember this point, for sure.”
But it was an important goal as another loss, and another lost player to injury, was the last thing this club needed. In the past month, the team has lost four games and three players to long-term injuries. Fortunately, Castillo battled through to help Dallas with the result.
“At one point it was 1-0 them, so it could have been zero points, so it shows good heart to come back but still disappointed to not get all three,” said defender Stephen Keel.