FC Dallas come back to Qualify for USOC Final

Photo: FC Dallas

FC Dallas has advanced to the US Open Cup Final for the second time in club history after a 2-1 win over LA Galaxy at Stub Hub Center on Wednesday night. FC Dallas won in extra time, completing a dramatic comeback as the hunt for the club’s second ever trophy continues.

This match was the ninth time that Dallas had played in a US Open Cup semi-final, but their previous performances did not inspire much hope. Despite the past history FC Dallas started confidently, having the best of the early chances.

The best chance in the early stages came in the 14th minute when FC Dallas midfielder Mauro Diaz forced a foul on the edge of the area. Diaz dusted himself off and stepped up to take the free-kick but he could only find the wall, letting LA Galaxy clear the ball.

In the 17th  minute LA Galaxy went close to opening the scoring themselves as midfielder Raul Mendiola went through the middle. Mendiola played the ball through to forward Alan Gordon who shot but was denied by a great save from FC Dallas goalkeeper Chris Seitz.

That seemed to kick things off for LA Galaxy who started to really go on the attack and they had another chance in the 22nd minute. Galaxy forward Emmnuel Boateng sent in a cross, which split the Dallas defense and fell to LA midfielder Mike Magee whose shot was well saved by Seitz.

Dallas hit back on the half hour and forced two strong saves out of LA Galaxy goalkeeper Brian Rowe. Diaz sent in a cross for Dallas midfielder Michael Barrios who shot low but was denied by Rowe’s save. Off the clearance Dallas gained possession allowing Dallas striker Max Urruti cutting behind the defense and shot low again but again Rowe saved.

There was one last chance to LA Galaxy before half-time when Boateng was able to beat his defender and send in a cross. Boateng’s cross found Gordon who hit it powerfully, sending it just over the bar.

The second half was dull, with neither side really wanting to risk losing the match but with 20 minutes to play things came alive again. Dallas had three shots quickly, first Diaz’s free-kick which was punched but only as far as Urruti, whose shot was saved, the rebound falling to Dallas midfielder Tesho Akindele who was denied by a strong defensive block.

A counter attack nearly gave LA Galaxy the win late on when Boateng was played through by a nice long ball. Dallas recovered, forcing Acosta to shoot from distance, which allowed Seitz to make a diving save and send the match to extra time.

10 minutes in to extra time it looked like LA Galaxy would have the match won after Chris Seitz fouled LA Galaxy midfielder Giovanni dos Santos. That allowed Mike Magee to step up and take the penalty, sending Seitz the wrong way, and LA, seemingly, to the cup final.

But in the second half of extra-time FC Dallas fought back thanks to some great set-pieces from Diaz. FC Dallas was back on level terms with four minutes to play as Diaz sent in a corner for Dallas defender Matt Hedges who headed the ball home to level scores.

With the match seemingly heading to penalties, and in stoppage time in extra-time Dallas stole the win and the ticket to the final. Diaz sent in a corner for his midfielder Victor Ulloa, who scored with a header from the other side of the box and sent Dallas to the final. As New England Revolution won the other match, FC Dallas will host the US Open Cup Final at Frisco at some point in September, the first US Open Cup final hosted in Texas.

Stoppage time goal sees FC Dallas eliminate Dynamo

Photo: FC Dallas

FC Dallas clinched a place in the US Open Cup Semi-Finals on Wednesday night thanks to a stoppage time winner at BBVA Compass Stadium. Fabian Castillo scored the winner for FC Dallas as they defeated fierce rivals Houston Dynamo 1-0 in the US Open Cup Quarter-Finals.

It was the third time in four years that FC Dallas have eliminated Houston Dynamo from the cup, this time on solid work from Castillo to win the match. It came after a Kellyn Acosta long ball, which was partially cleared by Jalil Anibaba but only as far as Castillo, who got to the top of the box and hit a low shot, just part Joe Willis.

Being a cup match that would mean a loss eliminated the side, and so that kept things tight in the early going. The match didn’t really have its first chance until the half hour when Mauro Diaz released Michael Barrios on a counter-attack, he tried to find Maxi Urruti but it was put out for a corner which Houston cleared.

FC Dallas kept on attacking and the next one was Diaz releasing Urruti up the left, allowing him to control the ball. That saw him get space, heading it forward for his own run, but Joe Willis saved the shot well, keeping it scoreless at half-time.

Dynamo had the first chance of the second half with Dynamo cup specialist, Mauro Manotas being the man with the chance. Abdoulie Mansally crossed in for Manotas right on the line but Chris Seitz got down well and made a great point-blank save.

Urruti continued to be a target and in the 55th minute he was played in by Castillo, putting him in behind the defense. Urruti managed a first touch attempt to chip the keeper and it beat Willis but sailed just over the bar.

Dynamo responded well and had a great chance just before the hour mark when Agus was able to send the ball for Cristian Maidana. That allowed Maidana to play Manotas through and Manotas’ shot was hit powerfully and beat the keeper but could only find the crossbar, keeping it scoreless.

As the match got later and later the two teams started to shut up shop, and there was one final chance for the Dynamo. Giles Barnes was brought down outside the box, allowing a free kick which Maidana played short for Barnes to shoot but his effort was charged down. That was the final chance until Castillo’s stoppage time winner, sending FC Dallas to the semi-final, where they will play LA Galaxy in Los Angeles.

US Open Cup draw sets up potential Alamo derby

The draw for the first two rounds of the US Open Cup occurred at US Soccer House in Chicago on Tuesday morning. The draw sets up the enticing potential of an Alamo Derby as San Antonio FC could face Corinthians FC SA in the second round should Corinthians win their opening match.

That first match sends Corinthians FC SA north on I-35 to Dallas, as they take on US Amateur Soccer Association team, NTX Rayados in the first round. That match will take place on May 11th, with the winner getting the right to play San Antonio FC in the second round.

While Corinthians FC SA will go in to the match confident of beating the USASA side, the Rayados will be a tough test, having qualified for the tournament for five straight years. But in all those times NTX Rayados have only advanced only once, defeating the Austin Aztex in 2014 on penalties.

Soccer fans in San Antonio have been excited since the draw, as they look forward to the possibility of an Alamo Derby in that second round match. Should Corinthians FC SA get through the first round that is what San Antonio fans have to look forward to.

The match would actually be the second ever Alamo Derby as the two teams played each other in March in a San Antonio FC pre-season match. On that occasion, San Antonio FC claimed the win 2-1, with a late goal giving San Antonio FC the win after a stretched Corinthians FC SA defense couldn’t keep things going. The US Open Cup should see an even better match as the two teams will be much more prepared creating a great atmosphere, which will see the fans of San Antonio torn on who to support.

Houston Dynamo Eliminated From US Open Cup

Dom Dwyer celebrates a goal
Dom Dwyer celebrates a goal
Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

A red card and a rampant Sporting Kansas City have ended Texas’ chances of getting a US Open Cup winner for 2015. A ten man Houston Dynamo could not hold on as they fell to a 3-1 loss to Sporting Kansas City at Sporting Park in the US Open Cup quarter-final on Tuesday night.

Houston Dynamo were looking the stronger side throughout the opening stages of the match as they were almost constantly on the attack. Dynamo had four corners in the opening 12 minutes but they could not put any of them away.

In the 30th minute Houston’s chances took a significant hit after they were reduced to ten men. Luis Garrido was the man shown the straight red card as he went in on Amadou Dia with too much force, seeing Ted Unkel hand him a red card.

Despite Houston now being a man down, they were able to hold off the Sporting Kansas City attacks. It did not take long for Houston to readjust well and take back control but the match went to half-time with the match still scoreless.

Sporting Kansas City started the second half well and were looking the most likely to score in the early stages of the half. But despite that Houston Dynamo were looking solid defensively and holding firm.

Despite being under the pump for those early stages, Houston stole the opening goal of the match. Ricardo Clark was able to get a header away but his effort was blocked, only for Will Bruin to respond the fastest and tap home the opening goal.

Just four minutes after going behind Sporting Kansas City should have been on level terms after Brad Davis took down Chance Myers. That allowed Dom Dwyer to step up and take a penalty but his effort was well saved by Joe Willis to keep Houston in front.

In the 69th minute Benny Feilhaber could well have pulled Sporting Kansas City on level terms but was denied by a clearance off the line from Kofi Sarkodie. But in the second minute he was not to be denied as Matt Besler found Feilhaber who buried it to level the scores.

This saw Kansas City keep pushing, as they were inspired by the goal and looked to wrap things up without extra time. The goal finally came in the 86th minute as Krisztian Nemeth found Dom Dwyer who was able to beat Willis at the near post.

Just two minutes later the match was well and truly stitched up as Sporting took a 3-1 lead when Dwyer returned the favour to Nemeth. That allowed Nemeth the chance which he took, thanks to a deflection off of AJ Cochran to seal the final score.

FC Dallas Dumped From US Open Cup

Dom Dwyer celebrates a goal
Dom Dwyer celebrates a goal
Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

There were eight goals, but six of them hit the back of the FC Dallas net as Sporting Kansas City managed a 6-2 win over FC Dallas at Sporting Park on Wednesday night. The win sees Sporting Kansas City advance to the quarter-finals of the US Open Cup, where they will play Houston Dynamo in Houston.

It took just five minutes for Kansas City to hit the lead as a corner from Benny Feilhaber was sent to the far post. That allowed Dom Dwyer to jump on to it, heading it in down off the cross bar to open the scoring early.

It should have been two just 18 minutes in as Krisztian Nemeth stole possession up high. That allowed him to find Jacob Peterson who beat his defender to the ball which saw the chance be created but he was denied by a nice slide in from Chris Seitz.

FC Dallas could well have got back on level terms in the 24th minute thanks to a nice cross from Roland Escobar. He curled his cross in to the box, but his effort could only just scrape the crossbar as it went too high, over the bar.

On the half hour mark, Kansas City had their lead doubled after some nice play between Feilhaber and Dwyer. Feilhaber lifted a free kick to the far post where Dwyer ran through a crowd of Dallas defenders and headed it home.

There was a first half hat trick for Dwyer in the 41st minute after Kansas City were awarded a penalty when Moises Hernandez brought down Dwyer. Dwyer dusted himself off and dispatched the penalty promptly to make it three.

Just before half time Sporting Kansas City were able to make it 4-0 after a solid run from Jacob Peterson down the right allowed him to set it up. Peterson sent a ball in for Nemeth who was able to run on to it and finish with his first touch to make it 4-0 at half time.

It became 5-0 in the 59th minute as there was another brace, this time from Nemeth who linked up well with Saad Abdul-Salaam. With half an hour to play the match was all but over, which allowed Sporting Kansas City to let their foot off the gas.

But three minutes later, FC Dallas pulled a goal back thanks to some nice passing work down the wing between Michael Barrios and David Texeira. Barrios received possession, all alone on the keeper and sent it out of his reach, low and to the left.

Unfortunately for FC Dallas they conceded shortly after as Dwyer was able to score his fourth of the night. It came in the 69th minute from a free-kick just outside the box as he hit on a curling shot which snuck in under the crossbar, which saw him work in to a tie for the top of the tournament golden boot standings.

Dallas did pull back the final goal, a consolation goal in the 73rd minute as Kellyn Acosta was able to score his first ever FC Dallas goal. Acosta got possession in the middle of the field, looked up and shot, from 30 yards, taking a deflection off of Matt Besler’s back, and catching out the keeper to make it a 6-2 final score.

Weather Delay Doesn’t Stop Dynamo

Joe Willis makes a big save
Joe Willis makes a big save
Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

It took almost three hours for the match to get started but Houston Dynamo have advanced to the 2015 US Open Cup quarter-final after a 1-0 win over Colorado Rapids at BBVA Compass Stadium on Tuesday night. In what has become a common occurrence in Houston this summer, the heavens opened leaving the stadium all but under water, creating a two hour, 48 minute delay as the ground staff cleared the pitch.

Dynamo started the match well and they were looking dangerous in the early stages and had their first chance in the 14th minute. Leonel Miranda was able to send in a cross for Alex and his effort was well saved by Zac MacMath who parried it away.

There was plenty of attacking play in the match, as both teams seemed to abandon defensive play and really go for it. There were 36 shots, with Colorado managing 20 of those shots, with that statistic showing the wastefulness of both sides.

The match was open throughout but the goal didn’t come until the 43rd minute thanks to a ball from Nathan Sturgis. Sturgis’ ball was curled in to a packed penalty area but Mauro Manotas was able to run on to the ball and head it home with a nice glancing header, scoring his first goal for Houston, in his first start for the club.

The two keepers were the story of the night, with Joe Willis and MacMath doing phenomenally well in each goal. Just as the match ticked in to the 45th minute Willis made a vital save as he was able to use his back leg to tip a shot off of the post.

In the early stages of the second half, it was only the post that denied Colorado from getting an equalizer. Vincente Sanchez sent in a perfect free-kick to find Jared Watts whose header came off the near post from close range.

It really was all Colorado in the second half, as they consistently pressured the Houston defense but for all that work they could not break through. In the 70th minute only a stunning Willis save kept it 1-0 after some impressive build up play allowed Marcelo Sarvas through on goal but he was denied by a stunning, low save.

Dillon Powers had one last chance to force the match to extra time, back in his home state. But Powers could only shoot right at Willis, which allowed him a simple save, to seal the win and send Houston to the last eight.