FC Dallas will get an early look at its fellow Texan MLS sides as well as San Antonio FC in a new preseason competition.
La Copita – dubbed the Best Little Cup in Texas – will be a round-robin competition pitting the four Texas sides against each other, in addition to OKC Energy filling in for SAFC in a game against Houston. The competition will be decided on points, with goal difference serving as the first tie-breaker rather than wins as is the case in Major League Soccer.
FC Dallas kicks off the schedule at San Antonio’s Toyota Field on Saturday, March 27 at 1pm. Only San Antonio FC will be eligible to win points in this game due to an unbalanced schedule that sees Dallas play an extra game. The Alamo City club will also make the trip up to Frisco on Friday, April 2 for an 11 am kick-off at Toyota Stadium.
Each of these first two games will be closed off to fans, and no stream will be available.
On Wednesday, April 7 FC Dallas will welcome Austin FC to Toyota Stadium at 4 pm for the first game in 2021 that will be played in front of fans. FCDallas.com will also host a live stream.
Fans will also be permitted for the final game as FCD travels for its true Texas Derby in Houston on Saturday, April 10 at 4 pm in BBVA Stadium.
There are a couple of quirks in the rules. If a player is sent off in the first half of a game, he may be substituted, although that rule will not be in effect in the second half. Any player shown a red card will also not serve a suspension.
Draws are also out as any game that finishes level will go to a penalty shootout. The winning team would receive two points rather than the three for a win in regular time, and the losing team in a shootout would receive a single point. Teams also have the option of playing an extra time period for fitness, although any score in that time would not count towards the result.
FC Dallas famously contested for another preseason tournament in Austin when the ATX Pro Challenge put up its own Texas-inspired trophy of an Armadillo complete with a Western-style set of revolvers and hat. DC united ultimately claimed the prize with a 1-0 final win over FCD at the University of Texas’ Mike A. Myers Stadium/