PREVIEW: Crew vs. FC Dallas

Pioneer Cup underway as Crew, Dallas seek first wins

Playoff clubs a year ago, both the Columbus Crew and FC Dallas
are looking for their first victory of the season when the clubs meet
Friday night at Crew Stadium. The Crew are home for a second consecutive
game, after gaining their first point in a draw with New York last
week. FC Dallas are on the road for the first time, dropping their first
contest of the season last weekend to San Jose.

REFEREE: Jair Marrufo. SAR (bench): C.J. Morgante;
JAR (opposite): Corey Rockwell; 4th: Jasen Anno MLS Career: 108 games;
FC/gm: 25.2; Y/gm: 3.3; R: 27; pens: 39

INJURY REPORT: COLUMBUS CREW – OUT: MF Danny O'Rourke (L knee surgery); DF Shaun Francis (L hamstring strain); PROBABLE: GK Andy Gruenebaum (R adductor strain) ... FC DALLAS – OUT: DF Kyle Davies (L ankle surgery recovery); DF Edson Edward (ACL tear)

INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: CLB: Korey Veeder (U.S. U-20s) ... DAL: Moises Hernandez (U.S. U-20s)

SUSPENDED:
none

HEAD-TO-HEAD

ALL-TIME (38 meetings): Crew 15 wins (1 shootout), 52 goals ... FC Dallas 15 wins (1 shootout), 53 goals ... Ties 8

AT COLUMBUS (20 meetings): Crew 10 wins (0 shootout), 32 goals... FC Dallas 4 wins (0 shootout), 21 goals... Ties 6

RETURN MATCH: 7/2: FC Dallas vs. Columbus Crew, 9 p.m.

LAST YEAR (MLS):

4/10: DAL 2, CLB 2 (Cunningham 29; Avila 90 – Moffat 52; Barros Schelotto 82)

8/28: CLB 0, DAL 0

  • The all-time series is deadlocked, with each team having won 15
    matches, with 8 draws. Dallas has scored one more goal in the 38
    meetings, 53-52.
  • FC Dallas last won at Crew Stadium on Oct. 6, 2007, the Crew winning the next two meetings before last year’s tie.
  • The Crew haven’t won at Pizza Hut Park since a 2-1 victory, Aug. 30, 2008.
  • Coaches record: Robert Warzycha vs. DAL: P6 W2 L2 D2 ... Schellas Hyndman v CLB: P6 W1 L3 D2

COLUMBUS CREW

The Columbus Crew gained their first result of the season, playing to a scoreless draw with the New York Red Bulls on Saturday afternoon at Crew Stadium. The Crew have 1 point from 2 games on the season.

LAST MATCH

  • Facing a makeshift Red Bulls side forced to make six changes through international duty and injury, Crew goalkeeper William Hesmer was called upon to make two saves.
  • Red Bulls goalkeeper Alex Horwath, who signed with the club Friday,
    made his MLS debut between the posts and recorded five saves.

TEAM NEWS

A season ago, the Crew opened with eight games unbeaten (6-0-2). But
in 2009, they were winless in the first seven games of the season
(0-2-5).

  • "We all know we can play much, much better than this," Eddie Gaven
    said to the Columbus Dispatch. "Playing the first game at home, we felt
    like we should have put on a better performance than we did. We all know
    we have a good team here, but unfortunately we haven't really showed
    that yet."
  • The Crew still have yet to score from open play on the season; the lone goal came on a penalty kick.
  • “If you don’t shoot, you don’t score,” Warzycha said. “It’s as
    simple as that. We had opportunities in the second half, probably two or
    three times where somebody could have pulled the trigger.”
  • With Emilio Renteria
    still out with a hamstring injury, Warzycha put Jeff Cunningham on the
    substitutes’ bench and moved Emmanuel Ekpo to a withdrawn attacking role
    underneath Andres Mendoza. Ekpo had played a more attacking midfield
    role against D.C. United.
  • “If you look at the two games, we definitely had more success
    playing with one striker and Ekpo behind him,” Warzycha said. “We
    pressured them higher. We’ll see this week [at practice] how we’ll play.
    We’ll try both things and now we have [Rentería] coming back.”
  • After coming on as a substitute in the season-opening loss, Robbie
    Rogers was a starter in a wide midfield role, playing 64 minutes.
  • “[Rogers] was active in the beginning and also in the second half
    but we wanted to change the game with fresh legs and going after
    defenders,” Warzycha said.
  • Rookie Bernardo Anor made his MLS debut, coming on for Rogers in the
    64th minute.     “I was mentally prepared,” he said. “When I’m on the
    bench I hear the crowd, but when I’m about to get in I am focusing on
    keeping things simple and doing my best. I felt pretty good to finally
    get some playing time. I have put in a lot of effort with the team.”

FC DALLAS

FC Dallas went down to defeat for the first time in 2011, falling 2-0 to the San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday evening at Pizza Hut Park. FCD has 1 point from 2 games on the season.

LAST MATCH

  • In the fifth minute, Chris Wondolowski opened his 2011 account after chesting down a Chris Leitch pass just inside the Dallas 18-yard box. He spun to his left and hit a side-winding volley past a diving Kevin Hartman.
  • Wondolowski completed his double in the 23rd minute. A half-cleared ball into the box fell to Joey Gjertsen
    on the left edge of the area. Gjertsen then floated another cross to
    the 2010 MLS Golden Boot winner, who had no trouble flicking a header
    past Hartman.
  • FC Dallas head coach Schellas Hyndman made two changes to the team that reached a 1-1 draw with the Chicago Fire at Pizza Hut Park. Jair Benitez came into the back four for the suspended Brek Shea, and Ricardo Villar came in on the wing for Eric Avila.

TEAM NEWS

  • With Brek Shea suspended after being sent off in the season opener,
    Hyndman moved Zach Loyd into central defense alongside George John. Ugo Ihemelu, who came on as a substitute in the season opener, did not figure in the contest.
  • “On both goals, both of those defenders were too far away,” said
    Hyndman. “Their responsibility is to stop shots, stop penetration, stop
    runners from running through them, and I thought that those two
    situations, they left them too free. We have seen them both play better
    than that.”
  • FC Dallas lost for the first time at home since a 1-0 defeat by the LA Galaxy last May 20.
  • FC Dallas also conceded two goals in the first half for the first
    time in 38 games, since Sept. 12, 2009, when they conceded three in the
    opening 45 minutes of a 6-3 win against the LA Galaxy.
  • “The game is made with two parts,” Hyndman said. “Stopping goals and
    scoring goals, and I don’t think we did either very well today.”
  • Ricardo Villar made his first MLS start, playing wide on the left of
    midfield, replacing Eric Avila. 18-year-old Colombian youth
    international Fabian Castillo then came on for Villar after 57 minutes
    for his MLS debut.
  • “I thought he was very good,” Hyndman said. “He’s very explosive,
    which he showed when I went to Colombia. He’s a player that moves as
    quick with the ball at his feet as he does without it.”
  • The match is the first game of the Pioneer Cup, in dedication of the
    legacy left by Lamar Hunt, who was investor/operator of both clubs. The
    teams play in two of the first three soccer-specific stadiums built in
    the United States. Both stadiums memorialize Hunt with 10-foot tall
    statues of the visionary, and both clubs honor his legacy by wearing the
    emblem with the initials “LH” on the back of their jerseys.