FRISCO, Texas – Only three teams in the history of Major League Soccer have reached the 200-win plateau. The LA Galaxy reached the 200-win mark in April of 2010, and D.C. United came in right behind them that June. Just over a year later, FC Dallas has become the third MLS franchise to win 200 games with last weekend’s 2-1 victory over Chivas USA.
In honor of this milestone, FCDallas.com has put together a list of the Top 10 regular season wins in franchise history with input from fans, long-time front office staff and former players. We’ll reveal three games each day, leading up to the unveiling of what we believe to be one of the most memorable wins in club history on Thursday, June 23.
Like any “best of” list, the contents and order are up for debate – let your voice be heard in the comments section below.
We started the countdown with 10 through 8 on Monday and rolled out 7 through 5 on Tuesday. Now it’s on to 4 through 2.
Win #49 – March 20, 1999: DAL 4, KC 0
Start of an MVP season
Until last year, 1999 stood as the most successful season in franchise history and the only year the club boasted the league MVP in Jason Kreis. That memorable season and MVP campaign began on opening night at the Cotton Bowl against Kansas City.
After a scoreless first half, Kreis began his night modestly with an assist on fellow forward Mickey Trotman’s goal in the 53rd minute. Trotman would return the favor on Kreis’ first goal of the season two minutes later.
Kreis earned an unassisted brace in the 80th minute and followed that up by securing his first career hat trick four minutes later off a beautiful feed from Colombian playmaker Oscar Pareja. Kreis would score 15 more goals for the Burn that season on his way to being named the MLS Scoring Champion and league MVP.
It was the first time in league history that one player scored the most goals in the league, won the MLS Scoring Champion award and was named league MVP all in the same year.
*Editor’s note: The MLS Scoring Champion award was given to the player with the highest goal and assist total each season until it was replaced by the MLS Golden Boot in 2005, which is awarded based on goal total alone.
Win #174 – August 1, 2009: FCD 6, KC 0
Cunningham sandwiches Ferreira…twice
If a hat trick is one of soccer’s most elusive creatures, then a four-goal game is the sport’s mythological beast. MLS scoring legend Jeff Cunningham conquered that beast while wearing an FC Dallas uniform in 2009 when he led the team to a 6-0 victory over Kansas City.
Cunningham started the rampage late in the first half when he put away an Atiba Harris pass in the 38th minute. Future MLS MVP David Ferreira followed that up with FCD’s second of the night in the 42nd minute.
The duo really started to pile on when Cunningham netted his second of the game in the 66th and then secured a hat trick 10 minutes later. Ferreira tried to keep up by bagging a brace in the 78th minute, but JC9 would score his fourth of the night in the 89th to give Dallas the club’s largest margin of victory in franchise history.
Cunningham’s four-goal outburst stands as the best single-player performance in franchise history and it sparked Dallas to a 7-1-4 run that saw them fall just one result shy of a playoff berth. JC9 went on to be named the MLS Scoring Champion that year with 17 goals and eight assists and win the 2009 Budweiser Golden Boot.
Win #181 – May 5, 2010: FCD 1, HOU 0
First win at Houston
The 2010 season will forever be remembered as one of the most successful in franchise history. The team kick-started that success in Houston after starting the year with a record of 0-2-4.
FC Dallas earned a 1-1 draw with the Dynamo in the first leg of the 2010 Texas Derby at Pizza Hut Park, giving Houston the away-goal edge heading into the second leg at Robertson Stadium – where Dallas was previously winless in seven tries.
The competition appeared to be destined for a scoreless draw until midway through the second half. After losing defender Jair Benitez to a red card in the 73rd minute, a shorthanded Dallas side battled back to earn their first-ever win at Robertson Stadium off an Ugo Ihemelu header six minutes after Benitez’s early exit.
The first win of 2010 also marked the emergence of Kevin Hartman as starting goalkeeper for the club, a role he still holds to this day.
Stay tuned to FCDallas.com all week to keep up with our countdown, and let us know your thoughts in the comments section below. We’ll be unveiling the franchise’s top game on Thursday.
Click here to see which game came in at number one.