11.7 Top 5 Saves

FRISCO, Texas - We've counted down the Top 5 goals and Top 5 assists from FC Dallas' 2022 season. Next up: Top 5 saves. Basically, this is a Maarten Paes tribute article.

Let's get started.

5. Maarten Paes vs. Real Salt Lake | August 27

Paes leads things off with an outstanding one-hand save against Real Salt Lake back in August at Toyota Stadium. Dallas had a 1-0 lead when RSL's Pablo Ruiz stepped up to a free kick just outside the box. Ruiz couldn't have hit it much better has the ball was curling and dipping into the top corner but Paes was able to scramble to his right to palm it onto the face of the crossbar and out.

4. Maarten Paes vs. Austin FC | July 16

Next up is a double save from Paes against in-state rivals Austin FC. Paes makes the initial stop down to his right to deny Danny Hoesen from close range but the rebound is stabbed toward a nearly open goal. Paes, however, is able to get back up on his knees to lunge toward the ball and slapped it away just before it crossed the goal line. While the referee spotted an infringement between the first and second saves so the rebound wouldn't have counted anyway, Paes twice displays some incredible reflexes in the matter of seconds.

3. Maarten Paes vs. Real Salt Lake | July 23

This save is all about the quick footwork from Maarten Paes. With FCD leading 1-0 away to RSL, Aaron Herrera sends in an excellent cross toward the back post for Andrew Brody. Brody does everything right, he times his run well and heads the ball downward but Paes was able to cover the length of his goal as the cross flew over him and dove down to smother the header. It may not be the most eye-catching save but Paes demonstrates excellent fundamentals here.

2. Maarten Paes vs. Portland Timbers | March 19

Speaking of eye-catching saves, Paes delivered one against the Portland Timbers early in the year. Portland's David Ayala cuts infield and launches one just inside the near post. Paes sees it late but is able to leap to his left to push it just wide of the post with his fingertips. It might just be Paes' most aesthetically pleasing save of the season.

1. Maarten Paes vs Minnesota United | October 17

The top save of 2022 is less about the quality of the stop and more about its timing and importance to FCD's 2022 season. It was Dallas' first home playoff game since 2018 and, after a 1-1 draw in regulation, it went to penalties. Both teams converted their opening tries before Maarten Paes stepped up and seized the moment. Faced with Minnesota's Wil Trapp, Paes guessed correctly and dove to his right to block the attempt that was heading for the bottom corner. It was the only save in the shootout and helped send FCD to the Western Conference semifinal.

Also, Mark Followill's call is absolutely iconic: "PAES SAVES IT! PAES SAVES IT! PAES SAAAAVEEESS ITTTT!!"