FC Dallas earned their first win of the 2022 season and the Nico Estevez era on Saturday night at Toyota Stadium, taking down previously unbeaten Nashville SC 2-0 with a late pair of goals.
HIGHLIGHTS: FC Dallas vs. Nashville SC | March 12, 2022
Dallas struck for both goals in a two-minute span as the match approached second-half stoppage time, first from the penalty spot via Designated Player forward Franco Jara. Club-record signing Alan Velasco then emphatically introduced himself to Dallas in the 87th minute with a spectacular run and finish to give the hosts some late insurance.
Dallas caused Nashville problems all evening with their energy and off-ball movement, but the Coyotes' defense was resilient for long stretches. Jesus Ferreira and Paul Arriola stretched the field for the home side, with Joe Willis called into action before the break to parry a well-struck effort from Brandon Servania.
Constantly threatening in the second half, Dallas finally found the breakthrough in the 85th minute when substitute Jack Maher bundled over Arriola in the box, drawing a penalty kick whistle from referee Ramy Touchan. Jara made no mistake from the spot, putting Nashville behind for the first time this year.
Two minutes later, Velasco opened his FC Dallas account in highlight-reel fashion. The 19-year-old picked up the ball near midfield, running past five Nashville defenders before rattling a shot off the bar and in, securing the first win of the season for his new side.
- THE BIG PICTURE: Dallas were well deserving of their first win of the year, dominating Nashville with relentless pace, energy, and incisive movement. To cap it off, Velasco's goal was a perfect debut for the $7 million man. Nashville, on the other hand, finally collapsed under the pressure, losing for the first time in 2022. With five games left before they return home to GEODIS Park, are the miles starting to catch up to them?
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Velasco rewarded the Dallas fans' patience with a dynamic run and finish, hopefully giving the club a taste of much more to come. What a moment from the young Argentine winger, signed from Independiente this offseason.
Teenage sensation! Alan Velasco scores GOLAZO on FC Dallas debut
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Brandon Servania put in an absolute shift for Dallas, covering acres of ground defensively and finding space in Nashville's compact defense. He got the assist on Velasco's goal and was unlucky not to get on the scoresheet himself.
- DAL: Saturday, March 19 vs. Portland Timbers | 8:30 pm ET (MLS LIVE on ESPN+ in US, DAZN in Canada)
- NSH: Saturday, March 19 at Real Salt Lake | 9:30 pm ET (MLS LIVE on ESPN+ in US, DAZN in Canada)