Preview: Whitecaps FC return to Texas
VANCOUVER, BC - Coming off of a 1-1 draw against Real Salt Lake at home, Vancouver Whitecaps FC (2W-2L-2D) now head back on the road for the first of two consecutive matches against first-place FC Dallas (5W-1L-1D).
Saturday's match between Whitecaps FC and FC Dallas kicks off at 5:30 p.m. PT and is live on City and Bell mobile devices. 'Caps fans can also listen to Saturday afternoon’s match live on TEAM 1410 radio and teamradio.ca, starting with the pre-game show at 3:30 p.m. PT. TEAM 1410 will also have a two-hour post-game show, which will begin following the match.
It will a tough challenge for the ‘Caps on Saturday as they look to achieve something they have yet to do in MLS: win a match in Texas.
In their last outing, the ‘Caps played to a 1-1 draw with Real Salt Lake in front of 19,612 energetic fans at BC Place. Striker Corey Hertzog made his second straight start for the ‘Caps and first at home, while Russell Teibert also earned himself another spot in the starting lineup while making his first ever start at BC Place. The lone goal for the Blue and White came from Camilo on a second-half penalty kick following a hand ball in the box by RSL defender Nat Borchers.
WATCH: 'Caps set for Dallas trip
Saturday will see the ‘Caps attempt to defeat a red-hot FC Dallas squad for the first time on the road and earn their first away win of the 2013 season. Whitecaps FC currently hold a 0W-2L-0D record against FC Dallas in Texas.
Martin Rennie’s side will be without strikers Hertzog (concussion symptoms) and Kenny Miller (hamstring), as they stayed behind in Vancouver. The ‘Caps will also continue to be without captain Jay DeMerit indefinitely due to a left Achilles tendon rupture.
Currently top of the MLS table, the Hoops earned a 1-0 home victory against defending MLS Cup Champions LA Galaxy last weekend. A late goal in the 87th minute by defender George John gave Schellas Hyndman’s side the win and protected their spot atop the Western Conference standings. The victory extended their unbeaten run to five matches.
WATCH: Dallas ready to welcome 'Caps
FC Dallas are currently the highest scoring team in MLS, scoring 11 goals in seven matches, with Jackson, Blas Perez, George John, and Andrew Jacobson all scoring two goals apiece so far this season.
Dallas’ midfield also features Columbian playmaker and 2010 MLS MVP David Ferreira, who is currently tied for the league lead with three assists. The talented midfielder pulls the strings for FCD, creating scoring chances for the team’s quality strikers.
Head coach Schellas Hyndman will be without defender Ugo Ihemelu and midfielder Peter Luccin, both on the IR with a concussion and torn ACL respectively. The home side will also be missing defenders Walker Zimmerman (groin injury) and Stephen Keel (quad strain). Midfielder Ramon Nunez is questionable after recovering from a torn ACL, while defender Jair Benitez is also questionable with a left hamstring strain.
WATCH: Last time the 'Caps played FC Dallas
Saturday’s match will be the sixth all-time meeting between the ‘Caps and FC Dallas in MLS action. The Blue and White hold a 1W-4L-0D overall record against the Hoops, while having a 0W-2L-0D record on the road against their Western Conference rivals. In their most recent clash, FC Dallas secured a 1-0 defeat against the ‘Caps on September 15, 2012 at FC Dallas Stadium.
There is also plenty of regional history, as this weekend's clash will mark the 54th time that Whitecaps FC play a club from the Lone Star State. Overall, Vancouver have a record of 30W-19L-4D against Texan clubs, including an 11W-5L-0D record versus Dallas Tornado between 1974 and 1981 while Whitecaps FC were part of the old North American Soccer League (NASL).
Following Saturday’s road clash, the ‘Caps will return to BC Place for a rematch against FC Dallas on Saturday, April 27 at BC Place. Kickoff is scheduled for 3 p.m. PT. Tickets are available at ticketmaster.ca/whitecapsfc.