With an eye on improved defensive play, FC Dallas will battle rough-and-tumble Orlando City SC on Saturday in an interconference game in central Florida.
Saturday will be the first match between the clubs since a scoreless tie in September 2020 in a series that has been dominated by FC Dallas. FCD has won three of the six all-time meetings and held the Lions scoreless in two others.
Orlando City did produce its lone win in the series the last time it hosted FC Dallas, a 2-0 win in August 2019.
Orlando City (6-4-3, 21 points) head home after a 2-2 tie at Austin FC on May 22 that was accomplished even though the Lions played the final 21 minutes of regulation and more than seven minutes of stoppage time down two men.
Ercan Kara and Ruan Teixeira scored in the opening 22 minutes for Orlando City, and the club held on for a point in one of the toughest places to play in the league. Kara leads the Lions with three goals this season.
Saturday’s game will be the third in seven days for Orlando City, which defeated Inter Miami CF in a penalty shootout on Wednesday to advance in the U.S. Open Cup.
“A fantastic performance,” Orlando City coach Oscar Pareja said. “Besides the victory, it was an incredible effort from the players. They just played three days ago, so to have that courage and that willingness to do everything they did (was great).”
FC Dallas (6-3-4, 22 points) hit the road looking to rebound from their first back-to-back defeats of the season, most recently a 2-1 setback at home Sunday to Minnesota United. Prior to the two straight losses, FCD had a nine-game unbeaten streak going back to March 12.
FC Dallas lost despite outshooting Minnesota United 19-7, with just three of those 19 shots on goal. FCD has surrendered two goals in each of the club’s past two games after holding opponents to one or fewer goals in 10 of their first 11 games.
“I feel like we dominated the game, we had chances. We didn’t make them count,” FC Dallas defender Ema Twumasi said. “It was a tough game for us. We feel like it’s a game that we deserved at least a point from. Unfortunately, we didn’t get it. We just got to flush it out and get ready for the next game.
Paul Arriola had FC Dallas’ only goal in the loss and has scored in four straight MLS games, becoming just the second Dallas player to do since 2009.
–Field Level Media