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Know Your Enemy: Vancouver Whitecaps FC Part 2

For the second weekend in a row, FC Dallas squares off against Vancouver Whitecaps FC(5PM kickoff, TWC Sports Channel 148).

BC Place will host the second meeting between these two Western Conference rivals. Last week in Frisco, FC Dallas got an own goal and a second half header from Blas Perez to down the ‘Caps 2-0, their third-straight victory over the Canadian side.

FC Dallas is 2-1-0 all time in Vancouver, with their most recent visit to BC Place resulting in a 2-0 win last summer.

Vancouver enters this game fresh off a 3-2 win in the Amway Canadian Championship over NASL side Edmonton FC. Whitecaps FC came back from a goal down to secure the win in the first leg of that series and two will meet again next week on Wednesday, May 1 in Vancouver.

Injury Watch

The biggest injury happened back at the start of the season for Vancouver when veteran defender and captain Jay DeMerit went down with a torn Achilles tendon.

Both Kenny Miller and Corey Hertzog have been listed on the injury report for the ‘Caps, but each could make their way back into the game-day roster after training this week. Miller had been out with a hamstring injury while Hertzog has been dealing with concussion symptoms.

Introducing: Vancouvering

Key Matchup

Nigel Reo-Coker vs David Ferreira – We saw last week that this was a key matchup on the field for Whitecaps FC. Reo-Coker was very physical with Ferreira each time the Colombian got the ball. Ferreira was able to frustrate Reo-Coker into a yellow card last Saturday and that could be something we’ll see happen again on Saturday.

Key Player for Vancouver

Camilo – The Brazilian didn’t start last week for Vancouver, but during their midweek game in Edmonton for the Amway Canadian Championship he scored two goals.

What Camilo does on the ball is always fun to watch, but playing against him is another story. He is a crafty player who can cause many issues for a defender. Wednesday against Edmonton, you could make an argument that both of his goals should not have been allowed (offside on the first, a dive to set up the PK on the second), but a player like Camilo takes advantage of his opportunities when he gets them.

Projected Lineup

What Martin Rennie will do with his lineup for this game is anyone’s guess at this point. Last week he surprised many by starting Matt Watson, Tommy Heinemann and Erik Hurtado in place of key players like Darren Mattocks, Diego Kobayashi and Camilo.

On Wednesday in Edmonton, Rennie used a mixture of reserves in the defense and midfield with his key group up front. We will probably see another juggle of the lineup for Saturday as well.

Possible XI: Goalkeeper: Joe Cannon; RB: Lee Young-Pyo; CB: Andy O’Brien, Brad Rusin; LB: Alain Rochat; DM: Jun Marques Davidson; LM: Nigel Reo-Coker; RM: Russell Teibert; LW: Erik Hurtado; RW:Camilo; FW: Darren Mattocks.

READ: FCD attacking set pieces like never before in 2013

Keys to three points

Last week’s 2-0 win should give FC Dallas a pretty good indication as to how to beat Whitecaps FC. When FC Dallas pulled the ball wide and used their speed on the flanks, it presented a lot of trouble to Vancouver last Saturday. FC Dallas will need to use the same tactics on the road.

Schellas Hyndman told reporters last week after the match that Vancouver had yet to really see pressure like what Dallas used up front in the attack. That kind of pressure that Hyndman talked about was key in the victory with Jackson, Ferreira, Blas Perez and Kenny Cooper all putting chances on Joe Cannon’s goal.

Vancouver struggled on Wednesday with Edmonton’s attack in the first half. Edmonton was able to score two goals off headers, something that Dallas should key in on in their attack on Saturday.

Given how last week went, the ‘Caps will be out for revenge in this one. As long as Dallas sticks to its game plan and doesn’t get caught up in any silly fouls, FCD should be able to return to Frisco with three more points.