The hottest team in MLS extended its unbeaten streak to six matches as FC Dallas dismissed the Vancouver Whitecaps in a 2-0 shutout on Saturday. Now eight points clear in the Western Conference, the Toros continue to steamroll through their schedule and have already won six matches in 2013 — a win total that they took until August 11 to reach last season.
Not that they needed any assistance, but just before the half-hour mark Vancouver’s Brad Rusin gifted an own goal to the hosts. The defender, turned around as Dallas’ David Ferreira knocked a corner kick into the box, failed to get out of the way in time as the pass bounced off his back and into the net behind Whitecaps keeper Joe Cannon. It was unlucky in a way, but it was also an atonement for the fact that Vancouver had given up six corner kicks in the first 30 minutes.
The Whitecaps nearly equalized before halftime, as a bad clearance by Dallas goalkeeper Raul Fernandez gave Matt Watson an open shot on goal. But George John, the hero of last weekend’s contest for the Toros, had backpedaled into position to clear the shot off the goal line. Their best opportunity squandered, Vancouver entered the locker room for the break down 1-0.
Five minutes after the intermission, Dallas had a second goal to ensure their victory on the night. Coming out of the locker room fired up and in attack mode, the home side proved that the best defense is a good offense as they kept the ball in Vancouver’s defensive third. Kenny Cooper blasted a hard shot that Cannon was able to push away, but Blas Perez was there with a diving header to tuck away the insurance marker.
Vancouver, which had been resting several of its normal starters in anticipation of the first leg of their Amway Canadian Championship semifinal match with FC Edmonton on Wednesday, inserted both Darren Mattocks and Camilo Sanvezzo in the second half. Neither was able to trouble Fernandez as he picked up his fourth clean sheet of the season in the victory.
VANCOUVER WHITECAPS @ FC DALLAS
FC Dallas Stadium
April 20, 2013
- 29′ — DAL/Brad Rusin (own goal)
- 50′ — DAL/Blas Perez (Kenny Cooper)
- DAL (4-2-3-1): Raul Fernandez; Jair Benitez, Matt Hedges, George John, Zach Loyd; Michel, Andrew Jacobsen; Jackson (Je-Vaughn Watson/85′), David Ferreira, Kenny Cooper (Fabian Castillo/76′); Blas Perez (Eric Hassli/89′)
- VAN (4-3-3): Joe Cannon; Alain Rochat, Brad Rusin, Andy O’Brien, Lee Young-Pyo; Matt Watson (Camilo Sanvezzo/71′), Jun Marques Davidson (Gershon Koffie/59′), Nigel Reo-Coker; Russell Teibert (Darren Mattocks/58′), Tommy Heinemann, Erik Hurtado