VANCOUVER, B.C. – A late goal from second-half substitute Eric Avila capped off an FC Dallas comeback as the visitors rallied from a one-goal deficit to defeat the Vancouver Whitecaps, 2-1, on Saturday afternoon.
FCD defender George John scored a header off a free kick early in the second half and Avila added the second -- a low shot from the top of the box -- with just minutes left to give Vancouver their first home loss of the season. Defender Alain Rochat scored for the Whitecaps.
Schellas Hyndman’s team pulled out the victory despite playing most of the second half without reigning league MVP David Ferreira, who went down with an injury in the 52nd minute.
Dallas showed their intentions right from the start. In the second minute, Brek Shea came up with the ball on the right side of the box and laid it off to an unmarked Andrew Jacobson, who let loose a left-footer from the edge of the 18. Rochat, however, came through with a slide to clear the shot away.
After the match settled, Vancouver took the initiative. In the 25th minute, Vancouver's Davide Chiumiento swung in a free kick from the left side that was cleared by the FCD defense, but only as far as Jeb Brovsky, who then sent a pass back out wide to Chiumiento. The Swiss midfielder curled a cross towards the far post, where Rochat placed his header beyond 'keeper Kevin Hartman's reach for the 1-0 lead.
The assist was Chiumiento’s league-leading fifth of the season.
The visitor nearly responded with an equalizer two minutes later. Jacobson found the ball at his feet in the 27th minute and fired a shot that hit Rochat in the arm to set up a penalty kick. Ferreira stepped up to the spot, but shanked the kick wide left.
Vancouver looked to double their lead in the 40th minute, when Rochat darted up field and fed Camilo at the top of the box. The Brazilian cut past his defender before rolling a shot just outside of the near post.
Dallas were dealt a blow five minutes into the second half when Ferreira went down injured and had to be subbed out of the match. However, FCD weren’t deterred and equalized moments after their star went down. Marvin Chavez whipped in a corner that Jackson Gonçalves flicked to the back post, where John was waiting to nod home past Jay Nolly.
Dallas found a late winner in the 83rd minute. Left back Jair Benitez whipped in a cross to forward Milton Rodriguez, who failed to control the pass. The ball then dribbled to Avila, who found himself with some space on the right hand side of the field and unleashed a low shot to the far post to take a 2-1 lead.
With the win, Dallas improved to 2-3-1 and will now return home to host the LA Galaxy on May 1.
Vancouver, meanwhile, fell to 1-3-3 and will travel to Columbus to take on the Crew on April 30. However, they will do so without Designated Player Eric Hassli, who picked up his fifth yellow card of the season in the 80th minute vs. FCD.
VAN -- Alain Rochat 1 (Davide Chiumiento 5, Jeb Brovsky 1) 25
DAL -- George John 1 (Jackson Goncalves 1, Marvin Chavez 2) 53
DAL -- Eric Avila 1 (Milton Rodriguez 1, Jair Benitez 1) 83
DAL -- Ugo Ihemelu (caution; Reckless Tackle) 30
DAL -- Andrew Jacobson (caution; Reckless Foul) 66
VAN -- Eric Hassli (caution; Tactical Foul) 80
FC Dallas -- Kevin Hartman, Ugo Ihemelu, Jackson Goncalves, George John, Jair Benitez, Marvin Chavez (Eric Alexander 71), Fabian Castillo (Milton Rodriguez 46), Daniel Hernandez, Andrew Jacobson, Brek Shea, David Ferreira (Eric Avila 55).
Vancouver Whitecaps -- Jay Nolly, Jonathan Leathers, Michael Boxall, Alain Rochat, Blake Wagner, Wes Knight (Nizar Khalfan 61), Terry Dunfield, Jeb Brovsky (Kevin Harmse 77), Davide Chiumiento (Omar Salgado 84), Camilo, Eric Hassli.
Substitutes Not Used: Mouloud Akloul, Long Tan, Russell Teibert, Joe Cannon.
Referee: Juan Guzman
Referee's Assistants: -Fabio Tovar; Ian Anderson
4th Official: Baldomero Toledo
Time of Game: 1:53
Weather: Sunny and 61 degrees