Apologies for the lack of updates this week, but I’ve been fighting a sickness all week that’s left me unable to do much besides sneeze. It’s finally subsiding in time for what is a huge sports day for me tomorrow as my Sooners take on Texas and FC Dallas has a huge home game against Chicago.
It’s another game at home where FC Dallas are certainly big favorites and it’s another game where FC Dallas needs 3 points to keep pace in the fight for home field advantage in the first round and a possible Supporter’s Shield.
Chicago comes to Frisco on a high after their best result of the season, a 3-0 win on Wednesday night away to San Jose. The Fire are a team with a lot of big names on offense but not many goals to show for it. Prior to their three goal outburst in San Jose, Chicago had failed to score a goal in its previous four games.
In watching Chicago this season, I’ve seen a team that looks to have a lot of talent, but just isn’t very mentally strong. Not unlike Dallas teams of the past, Chicago is prone to red cards and late goals(20 of the 32 goals Chicago has allowed have come in the last 15 minutes of each half). Time after time this season, Chicago has played a very good 90 minutes only to lose to late goals. Against San Jose, the Fire finally put together a complete performance and showed everyone what they’re capable of demolishing a very good San Jose team at home, but the question remains as to whether they can string two good performances together. Ten points behind the Earthquakes for the final playoff spot, Chicago likely needs to win their five remaining games to have any change of making the playoffs. The Fire have three wins and one draw in 15 games at Dallas.
FCD is a team flying high after one of their best performances of the season, a 3-1 victory at a cold, rainy Community America Ballpark against Kansas City in a game where Dallas was missing five starters. It could be a record breaking night at Pizza Hut Park in more ways than one. Dallas can tie the all-time MLS unbeaten record of 18 games with a result while Jeff Cunningham sits at 131 goals, just one shy of the MLS record held by Jaime Moreno. After a string of six straight home wins in which Dallas allowed just one goal, they’ve struggled a bit at home in September drawing New York and New England while allowing four goals in the two games.
Dallas will be boosted by the possible return of two starters as Brek Shea will surely be in the starting lineup as he comes back from a two game suspension while George John will at least feature on the bench and could also start for Dallas. While Shea will certainly return to the lineup for Chavez, it will be interesting to see whether Jackson is moved back to center back or remains in his role at defensive mid with Dax McCarty returning in place of Eric Alexander.
Keys to the game and lots of links after the jump