CARSON, CA - For the second time in two months, FC Dallas went toe-to-toe with Los Angeles pleased with their overall effort but left looking back at five minutes that cost them the match.
Oscar Pareja’s side found themselves down 2-0 after 15 minutes at the StubHub Center on Sunday night after goals in the 11th and 14th minute. Twice, FCD pulled within a goal but ran out of time in the end falling 3-2 in a loss that further muddles the Western Conference standings.
“We’re a little frustrated because we came in here with higher hopes,” defender Zach Loyd said after the match. “I think we came out of the gates slow and when you do that against a team like LA and put yourself in a hole. It’s hard to come back, but I thought the guys did a great job of continuing to fight and continuing to push.”
A looped header from Michael Barrios cut the lead in half heading into the halftime break and the performance over the last 15 minutes of the first half, perhaps FCD’s best this season, gave plenty of hope to a second half comeback. Despite going down 3-1 to a Steven Gerrard goal off a set piece, Dallas would not be discouraged again pulling back to 3-2 via Atiba Harris’ 86th minute tally.
“The reaction was very good. I saw a team that reacted very well and could’ve equalized,” head coach Oscar Pareja said after the match. “If it wasn’t for a distraction on a set play, I thought we could walk out with points. The second half was good and it was a good game for both. Today both teams gave everything going forward and it was an open game.”
The loss sees FCD move into third place but with two games in hand on LA who sits three points above them and one game in hand on Vancouver who is a point ahead of Dallas. FCD returns home for perhaps the biggest Texas Derby in years against Houston next Sunday afternoon.
“This team normally bounces back when the tough moments come so I have nothing to say about the character of this team,” said PAreja. “The boys fought hard and I have to give them great credit.”