FC Dallas boss Nico Estevez says he wants his side to “dedicate a victory to our fans” when they play host to LA Galaxy this week in MLS, with the Texan outfit seeking to honor their steadfast support following a lengthy barren run on home turf.
Following victory on the road against Real Salt Lake, the Burn return home looking to post a first win on their own patch since the start of May, when they defeated the Seattle Sounders.
In the near-three months since, Dallas have lost to Minnesota, Vancouver and New York City as well as drawn with Miami and Austin, to leave supporters craving the feel of a home victory – something Estevez is determined for them to correct this time around.
“We want to dedicate a victory to our fans,” he stated. “We know they need it. It’s something they miss, celebrating a win at home, and our attention has to be focused on putting together a great game to be able to dedicate that to them.
“I think, analyzing the games we’ve lost at home, we’ve done more than the opponent to win in every game but we haven’t had the luck to get those points.”
Opposite number Greg Vanney is under no illusions that their hosts will make it easy for them, with the Galaxy boss pointing to the lessons they will have learned from the reverse fixture as key to their own victory, while paying respect to their prowess.
“(They’re a) good team, especially at home,” he stated. “It’s not an easy place to play and Dallas, it’s warm. The tempo of the game varies – they’re certainly going to be used to the humidity. For us, it’s just to push through it and bring it.”
“They’re a team that’s tactically well organized. Their wingers are fast, the runs behind the back line gave us problems here, so we’ve got to manage our depth, making sure we control their runners. They have some attacking quality. We’ve got to manage that situation, control the middle of the field, slow the game.”
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Dallas – Jesus Ferreira
There’s just not stopping the forward now, who is the club’s top scorer this term, and one of the most prolific performers in front of the net in MLS this term too. He’s bagged a dozen so far, plus he’s notched an extra five assists too, to see him lead the team in overall goal involvements.
Galaxy – Chicharito
The legendary Mexico forward may not be Galaxy’s most proficient player this term – he has posted seven finishes, two off club mate Dejan Joveljic’s tally of nine – but on his day, he might just be the most dangerous player in their arsenal. He’ll need to hit form on the road to help out here.
KEY OPTA FACTS
– FC Dallas has won five consecutive home matches against the Galaxy dating back to 2016. Dallas has recorded one longer home winning run against the Galaxy, winning six straight home meetings from 2004-07.
– FC Dallas snapped a seven-match winless run (D4 L3) with a 1-0 victory at Real Salt Lake on Saturday. The victory gave Dallas 10 points in its last 11 matches after collecting 22 points from its first 11 games this season.
– The Galaxy have won their last two matches in Texas, winning at Houston last October and Austin on May 8 following a run of nine straight visits to the Lone Star State without a victory (D2 L7). The Galaxy have won three straight Texas trips only once, in 1996-97, when Dallas was the only team in the state.
– Jesús Ferreira scored his 12th goal of the season and 30th of his career in Dallas’ 1-0 win at Real Salt Lake on Saturday. Those 30 goals have been split evenly with 15 each scored home and away while his 12 this season have also been split with six at home and six on the road.
– Dejan Joveljic’s goal on Sunday was his sixth as a substitute this season, leading MLS. Joveljic is the first player in Galaxy history to score six times as a substitute in single MLS season.