FRISCO - FC Dallas. Portland Timbers. One team advances. One team's season is over.
It's the annual Knockout Round madness and it returns to Toyota Stadium for the first time since 2014. Here's the lineup Oscar Pareja has chosen as he looks to punch a ticket to the Conference Semis.
From Sunday's loss in Colorado, Dallas has made two moves. One out of tactical preference, one out of injury need. Santiago Mosquera replaces Roland Lamah on the left wing - the same role he played with the two team's met a month ago. Dallas heavily preferred the left side of the attack in that match through Mosquera and Marquinhos Pedroso. The latter, though, will not start in the pivotal match, dealing with an injury picked up over the weekend and being limited in Dallas' one training session this week. In Pedroso's place, Maynor Figeuroa will start at left back, where he started for five MLS matches this season, with Pedroso available off the bench for a brief appearance is needed.
FCD's active playoff goalscoring leader, Tesho Akindele, is available off the bench for Pareja. Akindele was the only MLS player to score in three consecutive postseasons, notching goals in 2014, 2015 and 2016 for Dallas. The 2014 Rookie of the Year has just two goals this season, but both came in a come-from-behind win over Atlanta on July 4th.
After missing two matches with a hip flexor injury, Abel Aguilar returns to the 18-man roster for FCD tonight, with Pablo Aranguiz falling out in his place. The Colombian midfielder has come off the bench in three matches for Dallas and the team has not lost in a match where the veteran subs into a match in the second half to close it out (2-0-1).