“We want to make sure that we send a message that this is the standard for North Texas” Recelty appointed Head Coach John Gall said after his team’s 4-0 thrashing of Portland Timbers2.
While not at full strength, Jose Mulato and North Texas were able to capitalize on one of the best attacking lines they have been able to put together since the start of the season.
Nolan Norris returned for his second straight start in the backline for North Texas. Jose Mulato started up top with Hope Avayevu and Herbert Endeley on each side, Endeley’s first game back with North Texas in a few weeks.
New signing and forward Lautaro Taboada is not yet with the squad but will begin training on Tuesday.
10 minutes into the game, North Texas got a man advantage for a few minutes due to a Timbers2 player staying down too long, a unique and new quirk to MLS Next Pro to discourage timewasting. North Texas was unable to capitalize on this pseudo-power play opportunity but a neat part of the league nonetheless.
Unfortunately, injury struck North Texas left back Tyshawn Rose was taken out of the game with a lower-body injury. He was replaced by Manuel Caidedo at CB, and Nolan Norris moved over to LB.
GOAL! 7 minutes before half, Carl Sainte got a pass out wide and curled it in for Herbert Endeley to nod home for a lead for the home side!
Herbert’s goal would remain the difference at the halftime interval, as North Texas carried a rare first half lead into the start of the second.
Just six minutes into the second half and Mulato doubled the lead for the home side! Yeicar Perlaza dug out a perfect cross to the Colombian, who rises well to nod it far post from 10 yards out.
Mulato would not stop there, as minutes later he added a second on the night after he slipped Diego Garcia through on goal, who recollects after a first shot and set it perfectly for Mulato to slam it home for the hosts to go up by three on the night. Mulato’s 6th goal of a turbulent season for the young Colombian.
Not to be outdone by his teammates on one end, Antonio Carrera made a highlight reel double save on his end to keep the clean sheet intact.
Already nursing a three-goal advantage, North Texas were afforded the luxury of taking their foot off the gas. They would decline to do so though and scored a fourth in stoppage time! Former trialist Tomas Pondeca hits a strong glass clipper through the legs of the defender for his first of the season for the former US International Futsal team player.
North Texas sealed the 4-0 win, their largest margin of victory on the season and first four-goal outing since the start of May. A huge win as well, as the club had been winless in their past seven matches.
Quotes and Takeaways
This win was a long time coming for North Texas, and John Gall’s first as coach of the team. Coach Gall contributes the squad’s success on the night to the “greater hunger” that has been implemented in the last two weeks.
On the style of play for the team, Gall elaborated, “FC Dallas and North Texas, the DNA is to be aggressive, with the ball and without the ball. We want to possess the ball as much as we possibly can… Obviously tonight we were able to get the goals.”
Jose Mulato has had a weird season, yo-yo-ing up and down from North Texas SC to FC Dallas and back, and seeing limited action despite FC Dallas missing number 9s up top. Gall credits a change in Mulato’s mentality as an aide in his 3 goals in the past two weeks.
Gall continued speaking on Mulato, “Jose has a great tactical understanding. The work he has put in has been fascinating to watch and be a part of.”
Gall’s style seems to have a strong focus on intensity and mentality, as mentioned often by him after the match and echoed by Tomas Pondeca, who said “The biggest difference would be our competitive edge and our intensity” making an impact in the big win tonight.
North Texas SC will look to turn this win into a win streak, as they travel away to MNUFC2 on August 5th.