Whitecaps consign FC Dallas to third consecutive loss

FC Dallas fell to a third straight loss at the hands of former FC Dallas winger Fafa Picault and the Vancouver Whitecaps.

“We are very disappointed,” said FC Dallas Head Coach Nico Estevez. “We want to win. We have our stadium packed with our fans and we just want to win for them.”

Coach Estevez changed things up, opting for a 4-4-2 pairing Petar Musa and Jesus Ferreira up top. Patrickson Delgado earned his first FC Dallas start with Asier Illarramendi still out.

After the game, Estevez spoke about wanting to have wingers available to get behind Vancouver’s own 3-4-3, but there must also surely be an element of a roster that lacks quality center backs and two-way wingbacks.

The game started about as dreary as the day’s weather until the Whitecaps took a 25th-minute lead through Mathias Laborda. The Caps defender fed Brian White through beautifully off a Pedro Vite long ball. White raced to the end line with Nkosi Tafari caught flat-footed before Laborda raced on to White’s return pass to tuck it inside Maarten Paes’ far post.

The Canadian side doubled their lead in the 29th minute in another goal that caught Dallas napping. A free kick in the Vancouver half worked out to Fafa Picault on the left wing. The former Dallas man whipped in a cross as Brian White easily got away from marker, Petar Musa, to head in from close range.

Sebastian Lletget dragged FCD back into the game in the 39th minute before Vancouver restored the two-goal lead three minutes later. Lletget produced a looping header from a Jesus Ferreira free kick after Dante Sealy was fouled.

A long ball from the half wasn’t dealt with by Sebastien Ibeagha, gifting Ryan Raposo a cross under no pressure that Fafa Picault found the back of the net from.

Despite the shift to a back four, Dallas struggled to stay organized in the defense. In possession, holding on to the ball for too long and opting for the shortest pass rather than the open man. The second and third goals came from moves started with a Vancouver free kick. They passed the ball around, playing a long ball as the FCD players left their defensive duties to leave the remaining defenders scrambling to cover their marks.

“Yeah there could be tactical issues,” said Lletget after the game. “After the break we’ll regroup and really sit down and look at each other and speak to guys on the backline, the midfield, to see what way we want to go forward and stick with it and get comfortable with it. Because something has to change.”

FC Dallas came out of the break looking for a way back in. Petar Musa fed Dante Sealy through for a run at the Caps area, but the youngster took a few too many touches in a shooting position on the way to being dispossessed. Sealy returned the favor in the 54th minute with Musa striking the post.

Both teams missed absolute sitters after the hour mark. Sebastian Berhalter pulled a back post header wide at one end before a cross by Paul Arriola found Musa all alone at the corner of the six-yard box. The Croatian blazed his half-volley over the bar.

A night to forget for Dallas in its worst start to a season in over a decade. Coach Estevez has the international break to work through health and tactical issues before traveling to Austin on March 30.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *