FC Dallas vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC
2017 MLS regular season
Toyota Stadium - Frisco, TX
Saturday, July 29 - 8 pm ET
WATCH: MLS LIVE in US, TSN in Canada
At first glance coming into this Western Conference match-up, it looks pretty good for the Hoops. FC Dallas are sitting at the top of the conference standings, all their guys are healthy, and everyone -- including star goalkeeper Jesse Gonzalez -- will be back home from international duty.
Still, the historical match-up between the two sides has proven pretty even across the last couple of years. Including a 1-1 draw between the two teams this past June 17, they have evenly split their last six MLS games, dating back to the beginning of the 2015 season (2W-2L-2D). Each team has scored five goals across these six games.
Still, Dallas did win both of their home games by a 2-0 scoreline during this six-game stretch. So Dallas fans might feel pretty comfortable, but a win isn't such a 100 percent sure bet. That's especially true sine the Whitecaps still find themselves above the playoff line. And though a recent loss to the Timbers might sting, previous wins over the LA Galaxy and NYCFC -- plus a squad bolstered by recent Gold Cup standouts -- prove there's plenty of fight in the 'Caps.
The biggest news coming out of Dallas' last outing? Cristian Colman's brace! The 23-year-old had battled to try to open his MLS account for 13 games, unsuccessful until the 14th, when he notched two second-half goals against the Montreal Impact on July 12.
"It's important for Cristian to score, we have been waiting for this moment," Dallas coach Oscar Pareja said after the match that night. "As a kid, he worked hard. He has been trying to adapt to the league, trying to adapt to the culture of the group, and all what he has done is just kept working. And today the game rewarded him and I'm very happy for him."
If that's truly bolstered his confidence and set something off, opponents had better watch out.
- Suspended: Maynor Figueroa (yellow-card accumulation), Hernan Grana (yellow-card accumulation)
- International duty: None
- Injury Report: None
Projected Starting XI (4-2-3-1 left to right): Jesse Gonzalez – Ryan Hollingshead, Matt Hedges, Walker Zimmerman, Atiba Harris – Kellyn Acosta, Carlos Gruezo – Roland Lamah, Mauro Diaz, Michael Barrios – Maximiliano Urruti
Notes: Cristian Colman’s two goals against Montreal last weekend were his first MLS goals in his 14th league appearance. He had only had five shots on target in his first 13 regular season games.
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
By all accounts, the Whitecaps walked away from their 2-1 loss to the Portland Timbers, at home on July 25, stunned to drop points to depleted visitors. "My attacking players were a little bit off," head coach Carl Robinson said that night after the match. "The final balls weren't great. We didn't actually beat any of their defenders 1v1. The quality in the final third just wasn't right. Sometimes you just have to accept that, and we will."
A bright spot -- two wins across the previous two matches, and the return of young Alphonso Davies from Gold Cup duty with Canada. The 16-year-old tied for top goal-scorer in the tournament, and he'll be ready to menace again at the club level.
- Suspended: None
- Int’l Duty: None
- Injury Report: OUT: D - Brett Levis (ACL tear), D - David Edgar (PCL, MCL tear)
Projected Starting XI(4-2-3-1, left to right) GK: David Ousted – Jordan Harvey, Tim Parker, Andrew Jacobson, Jakob Nerwinski – Tony Tchani, Matias Laba – Christian Bolaños, Nicolas Mezquida, Cristian Techera – Fredy Montero
Notes: Vancouver have only scored 14 goals from open play this season, tied with D.C. and Orlando for the fewest open play goals in MLS action this year.
- Overall: Dallas 9 wins (23 goals) … Vancouver 4 wins (15 goals) … Ties 4
- At Dallas: Dallas 7 wins (14 goals) … Vancouver 0 wins (2 goals) … Ties 0
Referee: Baldomero Toledo
Assistant Referees: Kermit Quisenberry, Jonathan Johnson
Fourth Official: Alex Chilowicz