Frisco, Texas (May 19th, 2018) – FC Dallas looked to start a winning streak against the Vancouver Whitecaps after handling the LA Galaxy last weekend. A hot and humid afternoon (and nearly empty stadium) would yield three goals for the home team: one being a career first for Reggie Cannon, the other an own goal by Maynor Figueroa. Dallas dominated the match, but would only earn one point on Saturday.
Stoppage Time Drama Negates Reggie Cannon Opener
FC Dallas looked engaged and on the attack for most of the match. Mauro Diaz looked sharp again with his dagger through-balls and exquisite dribbling. Maxi Urruti and company looked hungry for goals in the mid-afternoon heat, getting seven shots on frame.
The Whitecaps arrived in Texas after a late draw back home against San Jose. With a slightly different lineup after the midweek game, it seemed they were willing to absorb pressure and look for the counter. Dallas really controlled the tempo of the match as Vancouver waited for their moments.
When those opportunities arose, they were quick and decisive. Kei Kamara would come flying through the middle, dragging Matt Hedges back with him and forcing the Dallas defense to drop. Vancouver only looked dangerous on a free kick in the first half, and would not have a shot on goal for the match.
FC Dallas worked the ball around, trying to find gaps in the Vancouver defense most of the match. At some point, Dallas was going to get on the score sheet – it was just a matter of “when.” That moment came in the 40th minute when defender Reggie Cannon cut inside and curled a beauty to the far post with his opposite (left) foot. It’s a goal of the week candidate for sure, but Carlos Vela might have a say about that.
Dallas would double their pleasure late in the second half. Mauro Diaz would work his magic in the midfield and ran towards the Vancouver goal. As Diaz played it forward to Santiago Mosquera, striker Maxi Urruti ran over the ball and diagonal away from Mosquera. Santi took one touch then played Maxi into space, and his first-time shot flashed into the net for his fifth goal of the season.
Anthony Blondell would come in for Vancouver in the 68th minute, and he would turn the match on its head.
Just four minutes after Urruti’s goal, Blondell drove down the left side against Matt Hedges. He forced a cross in off the goal-line from close range, and an instinctual attempted clearance from Maynor Figueroa found itself in the back of the Dallas net. Maynor had played well most of the match but he surely won’t like having an own goal in his name for his first start in 2018.
Extra Time Madness
Water breaks, cramping, and minor injuries would lead the match into a questionably lengthy seven minutes of stoppage time. And it was in that final seventh (and eighth) minute that everything changed.
Urruti was called offsides, and Brian Rowe launched the free kick into the Dallas 18-yard box. Jimmy Maurer came to claim it but was challenged in the air by Jose Aja (and his arm), and the ball popped up towards the top of the box. As Blondell prepared to jump and get a header on frame, Maurer came running back out and clotheslined Blondell. Blondell’s header went wide where Kamara whiffed on a bicycle kick attempt. Head ref Ted Unkel was right on the spot, and called a penalty kick on Maurer’s contact with Blondell.
The stadium erupted into confusion and anger as Kamara stepped up and powered his penalty past Maurer to make it 2-2. Dallas had just enough time to put the ball in the center circle and kick it forward as Unkel blew the final whistle. Oscar Pareja sprinted out to the officials as he pushed his players to the dressing room.
Cannon continues to improve as the season goes on. The young Homegrown player has really grown into the right back position and is working well with Matt Hedges alongside him. But he is still very young and has a long way to go. His goal today will certainly be a big confidence booster as he continues to grow and mature into the league.
Both teams will stay exactly as they were in the standings. Vancouver has played three more games than Dallas, but the point each was enough for Dallas to hang onto fourth place in the Western Conference.
Dallas will get back to work as they prepare for a trip north of the border. They will face Toronto in a Friday evening matchup. Vancouver will head back home to prepare for a matchup against New England on Saturday.