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DC United at FC Dallas: Dallas Heat Shows No Home Field Advantage

DC United at FC Dallas: Dallas Heat Shows No Home Field AdvantageThe extreme heat and humidity in Saturday night’s contest was extremely evident on the faces of the players of both teams. FC Dallas was coming off a disappointing effort on the road ...


DC United at FC Dallas: Dallas Heat Shows No Home Field Advantage
The extreme heat and humidity in Saturday night’s contest was extremely evident on the faces of the players of both teams. FC Dallas was coming off a disappointing effort on the road at Real Salt Lake that we profiled earlier this week. DC United was going into their third game with their new acquisition, MLS All-Star Dwayne DeRosario. They were coming off an impressive road win at New York that we also profiled earlier this week.
DC United Setup:
     Coach Ben Olsen employed the same strategy that he has employed since acquiring DeRosario. The only difference Saturday night from the first two games was that DeRosario played the playmaker role behind Davies and Ngwenya instead of Wolff. DeRosario seemed to be extremely exhausted by the heat and had a surprisingly miniscule impact on the match. He did not see very much of the ball at all. 
    Simms was once again heavily involved in collecting the ball from the defense and trying to distribute forward, but with Dallas applying some high pressure he was not very effective in doing so. Kitchen at right back did not get forward as much as he had in the previous two games and it showed in DC’s lack of attack and service into the Dallas box.
FC Dallas Setup:
     FC Dallas set up in a 4-5-1 again but looked to attack much more than they did on the road at the Rio Tinto. Brek Shea was prominently featured mostly on the left wing, but he did switch sides with Jackson several times. He was extremely aggressive in attack, often cutting inside and looking to lay the ball off for a quick one two after a run behind the defense. Other than Shea the FC Dallas was disappointing to say the least, with the absence of their injured playmaker David Ferreira never being more evident, as they lacked that final dangerous ball to create a quality scoring opportunity.
     Chavez played up top with Villar in behind him and neither created many chances. Chavez is blessed with top end speed, but unfortunately for Dallas he seems unsure of how to use it properly for the teams benefit. He demonstrated this by being offside on the majority of his off ball runs, resulting in him not being able to use his speed to test the DC back line.
Extreme Heat a Debilitating Factor on the Match:
     Both sides seemed to be lacking energy at times and one could only deduce it was due to the heat. Dallas dominated the match but failed to create enough quality scoring opportunities. They played far too many long balls, especially from their back four. When they did have the ball in the final third they were too impatient with it, never really troubling the United defense, settling for long shots outside the box far too often.
     In the second half there were two opportunities for Dallas with numbers, and both times they were too selfish and squandered their chance. The first chance saw Chavez being a bit too greedy while the other with Shea doing much of the same, even though the aggressiveness from Shea was much more warranted than the same from Chavez.
     DC failed to make any sort of real imprint on the match and were far too willing to sit back with little to no pressure on the ball. They did not get the ball to their playmaker DeRosario often enough and it showed as they failed to create any dangerous scoring opportunities. Also their two center backs in particular were devastatingly wasteful with possession, often turning the ball over right back to Dallas without their midfield ever getting the opportunity to have the ball. Because of this Najar, DeRosario, Davies and Ngwenya were never able to have enough possession to make a meaningful impact.     
Conclusion:
     FC Dallas were clearly the better side but seemed to get in their own way more than DC did. They were too impatient in the final third, and this was due to them being too selfish. They also are in need of a better striker, as Chavez has the speed to get in behind the defense but due to his lack of patience is offside far too often and lacks the finishing touch that Dallas needs to push for the Western Conference crown.
     DC had to feel great to earn a point on the road. They clearly did not play their best match, and they will need much more from Najar, DeRosario and Davies going forward if they are to continue to make their push towards the playoffs.
  
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