FC Dallas will get right back to action after a 2-1 win over Portland as the Seattle Sounders come to Frisco on Saturday night, completing rematch week against the two 2015 MLS Cup playoff foes. Dallas (6-4-2) broke a three-game skid and snapped a 347-minute scoreless streak on Wednesday night. Seattle (4-4-1) is coming off of back-to-back clean sheet victories as they’ve turned a corner after a rough start to the season.
OUT FOR REVENGE
Saturday will be the first meeting between the two sides since last year’s Western Conference Semifinal series, which Dallas leveled in stoppage time of a thrilling Leg Two at Toyota Stadium before winning on penalties on a chilly November night. The Sounders have yet to win away from CenturyLink Field this season, with two losses and a draw, while Dallas pushed their home unbeaten streak to eleven games on Wednesday, dating back to August of last year.
KEY PLAYER FOR SEATTLE
Clint Dempsey – The native-Texan enjoyed success in and against his home state in 2015 – scoring the game-winning goal in Leg One and notching two goals with the U.S. Men’s National Team to kick off the Gold Cup at Toyota Stadium. He’s playing a more central role this season in the Sounders’ attack, but still leads his side in shots with 29 to go along with two goals.
Walker Zimmerman vs. Jordan Morris – The Sounders’ Homegrown is finding his groove in MLS and has goals in four-straight games – leading his side in scoring in 2016. Zimmerman has enjoyed a breakout campaign as a go-to center back for Dallas after his game-tying and PK-winning goals against Seattle in Leg Two last season.
Fabian Castillo vs. Tyrone Mears – The speedy winger seems to have hit another level after sitting in the first half against Toronto last weekend. In almost three halves of play, he’s put up five shots and been a consistent threat down the left side. Mears struggled with Castillo in the playoffs last year, as he flew past for the opening goal of the series, and will have another tough test this weekend.
PROJECTED LINEUP (4-3-3)
Goalkeeper: Stefan Frei; Defenders: Joevin Jones, Chad Marshall, Brad Evans, Tyrone Mears; Midfielders: Erik Friberg, Clint Dempsey, Osvaldo Alonso; Forwards: Herculez Gomez, Jordan Morris, Aaron Kovar.
KEYS TO THREE POINTS
Dallas will look to carry their impressive home streak forward and finish a six-point week before heading back on the road for two more matches. If the scoring flood gates can remain open after two second-half goals on Wednesday and FCD can ride the momentum at Toyota Stadium, they should leave with another three points in hand.