While attempting to end a four-game winless skid, the Vancouver Whitecaps have the additional challenge of back-to-back matchups against the team with the best record in MLS.
FC Dallas will try to remain perfect at home and extend its unbeaten streak to six games in the opener of a home-and-home series with the Whitecaps on Saturday night.
Vancouver (2-2-2) has earned two points since its 2-0 start with ties in each of the past two weeks. After going 0-2-1 in its first road stretch, the Whitecaps needed Camilo’s penalty kick in the 84th minute to salvage a 1-all tie with Real Salt Lake last Saturday.
“If things can click for us a little bit or fall kind of nicely, I think we’ll start to see even better results,” coach Martin Rennie said.
Vancouver might have a difficult time getting things to click against Dallas (5-1-1), tops in the league with 11 goals.
Dallas only needed one to get past Los Angeles last Saturday, getting that goal from George John in the 87th minute. Raul Fernandez made a career-high five saves for his third shutout in six games and stopped Galaxy star Landon Donovan’s penalty kick in the 69th minute.
“This is the best we’ve ever started out. You don’t start off a season with this type of record without having a fighting spirit. The team works hard for one another,” coach Schellas Hyndman said. “It’s one of those things that the team really likes one another. They are determined to find success.”
The win improved Dallas to 4-0-0 at home and extended its unbeaten streak there to eight. It’s 4-0-1 in its last five games overall and faces a Vancouver team that’s 0-10-3 in its last 13 on the road.
“They’re on a good run at the moment and they’ve got a lot of good players,” Rennie said. “It’ll be a great game for us.”
FC Dallas will try to extend those streaks while improving its 4-1-0 all-time record against Vancouver. Dallas has outscored the Whitecaps 7-2 in those games and recorded shutouts in the past two matchups, the most recent a 1-0 home win Sept. 15.
The teams conclude their two-game series April 27.