Game grades – FC Dallas at Real Salt Lake

FC Dallas traveled up to Utah on Wednesday to take on Real Salt Lake, a team that has struggled at home. With a chance to pick up key road points down the stretch, FCD brought their best.

A Chicho Arango goal right before half sent Dallas into the locker room down a goal, but the match looked totally different when they came back out. In a period of 15 minutes, Dallas managed to collect three goals – two from Ferreira and one from Arriola.

All the attackers played well, and the defense did its job to preserve the lead. FCD journeys back home now in 9th place, which is good enough for the last playoff spot.


(8.5/10) GK – Maarten Paes

Six saves on the night including a few great stops. Commanded his box well and cleared anything within reach. The goal conceded wasn’t his fault, so it’s hard to knock him for it.

(6/10) LB – Marco Farfan

A pretty average game for the steady left-back. He was an option in the attack when needed, and steady defensively too. No real shining moments, but no big errors either.

(6.5/10) CB – Sebastian Ibeagha

It was a solid performance for Ibeagha, who commanded the penalty box well and kept Arango at bay for most of the night. His passing was decent and his defending was good.

(6/10) CB – Nkosi Tafari

Tafari returned to the starting lineup after being on the bench the past two games, and he was close to his normal self. His passing from the back wasn’t excellent, but he did break lines on occasion. Like Ibeagha, he kept the RSL attack relatively quiet.

(4.5/10) RB – Ema Twumasi

Not the best showing for our only natural right-back. He delivered poor service and got caught sleeping at the back post to let Arango come in for his headed goal. He defended well one-on-one at times, but the errors continued to plague him. He was removed in the 66th minute for Junqua.

(6.5/10) CM – Asier Illarramendi

It was his pass in our own corner that Tafari couldn’t handle, which in turn led to the cross for Arango’s goal. Yet, he was a solid presence in the FCD midfield, as he connected 95% of his passes. He was taken off in the 66th minute for some fresher legs.

(6/10) CM – Liam Fraser

Nothing terrific, but also nothing poor. He led the team in passes completed with 47. Dallas will be satisfied if they can get performances like this in his limited minutes.

(6.5/10) CM – Paxton Pomykal

Full of energy and aggressiveness, including a great link-up play for the Arriola goal. He started by taking the ball from Arriola, then played a one-two with Obrian before squaring across the net for an easy Arriola finish. His only flaw was that he didn’t get on the ball enough before being sacrificed in the 86th minute.

(8/10) LW – Jader Obrian

The Colombian built off his good weekend performance with another great showing. He played a good one-two with Pomykal in the RSL box before the Arriola goal, drew the penalty for Ferreira’s goal, and then laid off a ball in the box for Ferreira’s second. His passing wasn’t great, and his touches were still bad at times, but with production like this, you can’t be too upset. Good help defense contributed to his rating as well.

(7/10) RW – Paul Arriola

His big moment was a great, driving run and layoff to Pomykal before continuing into the box for an easy tap-in goal. He was dangerous and aggressive for most of the night, which complemented the other FCD attackers well.

(8.5/10) ST – Jesus Ferreira

The striker had a big chance to chip MacMath in the 34th minute from midfield, but the keeper scrambled back to make the save. He had two goals on the night, as he scored the FCD penalty in the 62nd minute, then later intercepted a ball in the midfield and played on the counter with Obrian before slotting it in side-net for his second. Came off in the 79th minute with hopefully just a little knock.


(6/10) CM – Facundo Quignon

Came on in the 66th minute for Illarramendi. He slotted in more defensively as Dallas was looking to hold the lead. He did well to provide cover in the back.

(5.5/10) RB – Sam Junqua

Came on in the 66th minute for Twumasi, who was dealing with cramps. He assumed his role of right-back cover, where he helped see out the rest of the game defensively.

(5/10) ST – Jesus Jimenez

Played the final 11 minutes of the game as the replacement for Jesus Ferreira. He wasn’t able to contribute anything, other than some pressing high up the pitch.

(N/A) FW – Dante Sealy

The young winger didn’t have enough time to make an impact as he came on in the 86th minute for Obrian. He took one free kick but it wasn’t very threatening.

(N/A) CB – Jose Martinez

Martinez came on in the 86th for Pomykal as an extra defender, as Dallas was looking to see the game out. He had one clearance but was otherwise untested.

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