Match Report: FC Dallas 4-1 Colorado Rapids
Four days after hitting the heights in Utah, the Colorado Rapids were toppled in Texas, losing 4-1 at FC Dallas on Wednesday night, writes Richard Fleming.
Call it a Rocky Mountain Cup hangover, or a result of fatigue with playing every three or four days, but it was all over as contest with less than an hour gone inside Toyota Stadium.
"That was a pretty disappointing result for us considering we felt like we had pretty good control early in the game, a couple of half-chances, a couple of decent chances,” said head coach, Robin Fraser.
“We’re certainly not pleased to have that much control of the game and walk away with a 4-1 deficit.”
Despite a promising start, during which Jonathan Lewis hit the base of the post, the Rapids fell behind four minutes before the interval. Michael Barrios got away from Auston Trusty and pulled the ball back for Santiago Mosquera to fire beyond Clint Irwin, with Kellyn Acosta slipping as he attempted to intercept.
The Rapids were then dealt a double blow early in the second half. Franco Jara diverted a Reto Ziegler header past Irwin four minutes after the restart. Keegan Rosenberry then allowed the ball to roll under his foot, opening up an opportunity for Mosquera to run clear and beat Irwin from the angle for a 3-0 lead with just 57 minutes on the watch.
The one bright note for the visitors was a first goal of the season for Andre Shinyashiki. He reduced the scoreline to 3-1 just moments after replacing the injured Diego Rubio, before Mosquera completed his treble 12 minutes from time. The Rapids failed to clear a corner, Nicolas Benezet appeared distracted, and Mosquera reacted quickest to complete the first hat-trick of his MLS career.
His is only the eighth MLS hat-trick scored by a Dallas player, but the second against the Rapids, following the late Bobby Rhine in a 4-1 home win on June 8, 2002.
Head coach, Robin Fraser, made four changes to the side which won handsomely at Real Salt Lake last Saturday, with Irwin stepping in for his 100th start for the Rapids and his first appearance since the opening game in Orlando on July 12.
In front of Irwin was a new central defensive partnership of Auston Trusty and Drew Moor. Trusty was making his second start, while Moor featured for the first time since July 22, and the final group game at the MLS Is Back Tournament. Jonathan Lewis stepped back in on the left wing, with Shinyashiki making way.
Nicolas Benezet returned to the 20-man squad, and played the last 24 minutes, but there was no place in the travel party for Kei Kamara.
As with their previous four games, the Rapids were comfortable early on, pressing Dallas, and forcing turnovers. Cole Bassett, in particular, was busy and full of running.
Irwin did have to make a stunning double save during this spell to keep the hosts off the board, but you got a sense that it was only a matter of time before the Rapids found a way past Kyle Zobek in the Dallas goal.
In fact, it was Irwin who was the one picking the ball out of his net four times, as the Rapids’ errors were punished, and fatigue prevented them from mounting a sustained response.
Fraser added: "I think that through fatigue, we just weren’t as sharp on set pieces. A lot of set pieces are about concentration. As you tire, concentration wanes and you react half-a-second late. I think we saw some of that tonight.
“We saw some of that in what led to getting to the corner kicks. So certainly, as we grow as a team, part of it is we have to maintain our concentration even when fatigue sets in.”
Dallas did a good job of not allowing too much space for either Lewis on the left or Younes Namli on the right, while Rubio was closely monitored by Zeigler and Matt Hedges. Rubio departed in the 61st minute, to be replaced by Shinyashiki, perhaps feeling the effects of his left knee colliding with the post when trying to connect with a teasing Namli ball into the box.
By the time Rubio exited stage left, the Rapids were already three goals down, and the post-RSL euphoria had long-since fizzled out.
Next up for the Rapids is a third straight road trip, this time to the west coast and a Saturday night meeting with LA Galaxy.
FC Dallas: Kyle Zobeck; Ryan Hollingshead, Reto Ziegler, Matt Hedges, Bryan Reynolds; Tanner Tessmann, Thiago Santos (Edwin Cerrillo 83’), Andrés Ricaurte (Brandon Servania 63’); Santiago Mosquera (Bressan 84’), Franco Jara (Ricardo Pepi 83’), Michael Barrios (Fafa Picault 74’).
Subs not used: Phelipe Megiolaro, Johnny Nelson, Dante Sealy, Jesús Ferreira.
Colorado Rapids: Clint Irwin; Keegan Rosenberry (Jeremy Kelly 72’), Drew Moor, Auston Trusty, Sam Vines; Kellyn Acosta, Jack Price, Younes Namli (Nicolás Mezquida 61’), Cole Bassett (Braian Galvan 61’), Jonathan Lewis (Nicolas Benezet 66’); Diego Rubio (Andre Shinyashiki 61’).
Subs not used: Danny Wilson, Lalas Abubakar, Collen Warner, William Yarbrough.