Marbella, Spain – FC Dallas earned its first win of the 2023 preseason with a 1-0 victory over Hammarby IF courtesy of Paul Arriola’s second half goal at the Marbella Football Center Thursday afternoon.
“There were a lot of positive things,” said head coach Nico Estévez after the game. “We had a lot of chances to score today. We lacked a little bit with the last action, hit the post, or forced a save from the goalkeeper. But we did a great job in the buildup and were very dynamic. We need to keep working in the final third to be better and score more goals.”
FC Dallas’ starters: Maarten Paes, Marco Farfan, José Martínez, Sebastien Ibeagha, Ema Twumasi, Facundo Quignon, Paxton Pomykal, Tsiki Ntsabeleng, Alan Velasco, Jesús Ferreira, Paul Arriola
Dallas had the first chance of the game in the 16th minute when Tsiki Ntsabeleng found Jesús Ferreira in Hammarby’s box but the U.S. international’s cutback shot was saved. Alan Velasco was inches away from the opening goal 12 minutes later when he cut inside and sent a curling shot towards the far post but it ricocheted off the crossbar.
Estévez made his first two changes at the half-hour mark with Edwin Cerrillo replacing Facundo Quignon and Geovane Jesus coming in for Ema Twumasi. Jesus nearly created FCD’s second goal when the substitute found Ferreira with a cross but his side-foot volley went wide.
Dallas made one more change at halftime with Brandon Servania swapping places with starter Tsiki Ntsabeleng.
Paul Arriola made the breakthrough at the hour mark with a tidy finish into the far corner with his left foot after Velasco found him behind Hammarby’s backline with an excellent through ball. Ferreira almost doubled the lead five minutes later after FCD played a short corner routine that left him free at the top of the box but his shot was parried by the goalkeeper.
FCD made a line change in the 67th minute with Antonio Carrera, Isaiah Parker, Nolan Norris, Nkosi Tafari, Andre Costa, Bernard Kamungo, José Mulato and Jáder Obrian all entering the game. Amet Korça and Collin Smith were the final subs of the afternoon, entering in the 78th and 81st minutes respectively. Obrian nearly scored with the final kick of the game after collecting the ball in his half and carrying it 50 yards before his right-footed shot trickled just wide of the far post.
The 1-0 victory was FCD's final preseason match of its Marbella training camp. The club travels back to Dallas Friday to continue its preseason preparations at Toyota Soccer Center in Frisco.
“I’m very pleased,” Estévez said. “Everyone worked really hard (this trip). We’re headed back to Dallas ready to work next week.”