The FCD Fan’s Guide to Hatewatching Matchday 4

I’m Dustin “El Jefe” Christmann and I am an FC Dallas fanatic from Day One of the Dallas Burn. I’m also a hater. I used to yell mean, hateful things from the stands at the Cotton Bowl and Toyota Stadium, but now, I’m sharing my id with you to help guide you, my fellow FCD fans, in your enjoyment of Major League Soccer on TV.

Musical accompaniment

Last week

A team that knows how to run the 3-4-3 and that has great wingback play came into Frisco and beat FC Dallas for the first time in their 12-year history. Oh, you want more?

  1. Neither Dante Sealy nor Bernie Kamungo demonstrated much prowess in playing as wingbacks.
  2. Asier Illarramendi limped off injured at half.
  3. Logan Farrington: Not really that great as a non-striker forward.
  4. Omar Gonzalez was competent except for the time when he was beaten for the goal.

Other than that, it was a great game. At least Petar Musa scored and while it was a nice goal off a really nice assist by Bernie, who should’ve been playing as one of the two underneath forwards, it had the additional benefit of not being a golazo. We know how it’s often turned out when new players hit those kinds of goals in their first games for the club.


Los Angeles FC vs. Sporting Kansas City (MLS Season Pass, 9:30)

On the one hand, I agree with Steve Cherundolo’s comments about last week’s game in Salt Lake:

On the other hand, I also agree with Pablo Mastroeni:

It’s not like Real Salt Lake has 11 mountain men out there playing for them. That being said, after you’ve been in the area for a little while, you kinda get used to it. At least Ryan Hollingshead’s mustache kept his upper lip warm.

MLS fined Cherundolo $10,000 for his remarks, and remarkably, in a game where Peter Vermes is one of the coaches, Vermes managed to not be the biggest crybaby of the week. And because of last weekend’s annual orange ball game, the “MLS should go to the same season as the rest of the world, by which we mean Western Europe” brigade has been blessedly silent.

Honestly, this is a game between two teams in the middle of the Western Conference, albeit after only two games, but the only other possible contender for this slot is Philly-Seattle, and well, if you don’t manage to score at home against Little Brother Green, you’re automatically disqualified from being in this slot, which is a rule I just made up.

Jefe the Hater’s Rooting Pick: Draw. Maybe Cherundolo will blame the result on the traffic on the 110 Freeway afterward.

Little Brother Game of the Week

Austin FC vs. St. Louis City (MLS Season Pass, 7:30)

It seems like just a year ago that Little Brother Green, fresh off their Western Conference Final appearance against LAFC a few months earlier, handed St. Louis City their first win in team history in the friendly confines of Q2 Stadium, and we all had a good laugh about it.

Oh, wait. I’m being told that it was exactly a year ago, give or take a week or two.

Little did we know back then that the Toasted Ravioli Boyz were gonna be pretty good over the course of 34 games or that Little Brother Green was gonna come crashing back down to earth so dramatically. Still, one never needs a good reason to laugh at Little Brother Green, and “handing a team its first-ever win in its first-ever game at home” is more than sufficient.

To be honest, this game was always going to feature in this slot because Little Brother Orange is off this week, but even if they weren’t, how can one resist the anniversary of the most glorious day in St. Louis City history? (It sure wasn’t losing in the playoffs to the Sporks.)

And since South by Southwest is going on right now, Little Brother Green’s fanbase’s toxic entitlement is going to be only the second most repulsive thing in Travis County this weekend.

I don’t know, champ. Your small-market team has existed for three seasons and they’ve missed the playoffs in two of those three seasons. It was born because your vulture capitalist owner tried to run his previous team into the ground and still somehow couldn’t get them out of Columbus. Y’all are the incompetent second-tier comic book villains of Major League Soccer. That’s your standard.

Jefe the Hater’s rooting pick: St. Louis.

“Let’s Pretend to Care About the Eastern Conference” Game of the Week

Inter Miami vs. CF Montréal (MLS Season Pass, Sunday at 4:00)

Honestly, I really try to not feature Lionel Messi in this column every week. I know that you get plenty of that from every other soccer media outlet in this country, but if you’re reading this, you’re either

  1. amazingly bored while waiting for your car to get its oil changed and about one step removed from reading the list of ingredients on the coffee creamer in the waiting room, or
  2. FC Dallas-curious (hat tip to Peter) and by definition a bit MLS-curious.

And so, with that in mind, if I put a game in this column, it probably deserves to be in it.

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How do you watch it? It’s quite tricky. You go to the same streaming service that carries every other league game.

And this game does! Miami is top of the East with seven points (albeit having played one more game than everyone else) and Montreal is tied with six other teams for second with four points. Neither has a loss to their name thus far and in Montreal’s case, they’ve done it without a single home thus far this season, thanks to the fact it’s early March in Canada and their home-away-from-home this time of year, Olympic Stadium, is currently undergoing renovation work. Miami just came back from 2-0 down to get the 2-2 draw (and the two away goals) in the CONCACAF Champions Cup against the league’s stingiest defense in Nashville.

But because of that work at Olympic Stadium and because no one wants to be outside in Quebec this time of year, this game will be Miami’s third home game in four games total in front of people who paid way too much to sit in a glorified high school stadium in Ft. Lauderdale and watch a bunch of thirtysomethings give masterclasses in “work smarter, not harder.”

To add to the spice — well, whatever spice you can have with a game in March — this’ll be something of a homecoming for Bryce Duke, Ariel Lassiter, and Josef Martínez, all of whom were on Inter Miami’s roster last year before they decided to recreate 2014 Barcelona.

Jefe the Hater’s rooting pick: Montreal. There’s probably three feet — err, one meter — of snow on the ground back home, so they should enjoy their trip to South Florida.

Sickos Game of the Week

Real Salt Lake vs. Colorado Rapids (Apple TV+ free game, 8:30)

Oh, Colorado’s playing this week? Well, we’ve got our Sickos Game. Normally, they’d be competing with Toronto for the honor, but Toronto actually has a win this season and has yet to give up a goal. This is more than you can say for Colorado, who followed up getting hamblasted 4-1 on Opening Day with a 1-1 draw to Nashville in which they took a 1-0 lead on an own goal and gave it up on a penalty in the 90th minute.

Salt Lake, for their part, have followed up their Opening Night loss to the Fightin’ Messis in which they did everything but score with a draw in St. Louis and a home win against LAFC that made Steve Cherundolo so mad.

And it’s the first leg of the Rocky Mountain Cup!

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A rare instance of the Colorado Rapids’ hoisting silverware, and no, I don’t want to hear about 2010.

So we’ve got everything on tap for true Sickos gold: A rivalry cup, one team that’s terrible, and another team that’s probably pretty good, and stakes that are literally nonexistent for anyone that is outside of the Denver or Salt Lake metropolitan areas.

Jefe the Hater’s rooting pick: Colorado, because you know, it would be just plain funny for the sorry, no-account Rapids to win this game in the Land of Fry Sauce.

Good Guys Game of the Week

New York Red Bulls vs. FC Dallas (MLS Season Pass, 6:30)

“Hey Siri, show me FCD’s bogey team.”

“Hey Siri, show me FC Dallas’ injury report.”

Well, that seems bad. At this rate, I’m halfway expecting the team to lose one or two more players by game time by doing dangerous things like “getting out of bed at the hotel” or “eating Cheez-Its on the plane.”

But sure, let’s have FCD have a big injury list this week. It’s not like these things actually matter against the Red Bulls. In 2019, they rolled into Toyota Stadium and…

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At least Luchi didn’t say something like, “It’s a process.”

So sure, things look bad for the Burn this week. But I prefer to look at it as “no lose.” If the Red Bulls manage to get another win against our boys, well, lots of injuries, road game, &c. &c. If there’s a draw, it’s a good result. If FCD wins? A fabulous result. No lose.

But honestly, FCD’s not running North Texas SC (and friends) out there at Red Bull Arena tomorrow. Do they still have Jesús Ferreira, Petar Musa, Logan Farrington, Dante Sealy, and Bernie Kamungo available? Yes, yes, yes, and yes. So Nico, don’t do something stupid like try and put a goalscorer at wingback.

Score some goals, break that streak, and call it a day. Easy peasy.

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