While FC Dallas is looking to maintain its winning ways, the Vancouver Whitecaps are hoping a midweek victory will be the spark to end their winless ways as the teams conclude a home-and-home set Saturday.
Dallas (6-1-1) has won two in a row and is 5-0-1 in six after a 2-0 victory over the Whitecaps at home last Saturday. Vancouver defender Brad Rusin was responsible for an own goal in the 29th minute and Blas Perez helped FC Dallas claim three points with a goal shortly after halftime.
The own goal came off one of eight corner kicks earned by Dallas in the match. It has a league-best five goals off corner or free kicks, and coach Schellas Hyndman is eager to see his side utilize advantages on set pieces started by David Ferreira and Michel once more.
"We've got the servers and we've got the big players that are courageous and go in and attack the ball," Hyndman told the team's official website. "I'm surprised that we've scored five goals of thirteen off set pieces ... but you also work hard and you hope for it.
"We recognize that it's one of our strengths."
The loss extended Vancouver's winless stretch in league play to 0-3-2 since claiming the full six points with two victories to start the season. That's left coach Martin Rennie with little to be pleased about after losing for the first time since March 30.
"We've been performing well, playing well, but tonight wasn't a good night for us and on top of that, I think FC Dallas played very well, they're on a good run right now and they took advantage of our poor play," he said.
Vancouver (2-2-3) had similar up-and-down moments in Edmonton on Wednesday, where it scraped out a 3-2 victory in the first leg of its Voyageur Cup semifinals. Camilo scored two goals, one on a penalty kick in the 82nd minute to tie the match, and substitute Tommy Heinemann netted the winner six minutes later.
"I think Tommy Heinemann made a big difference when he came on," defender Andy O'Brien told Vancouver's official website. "I thought having a target up there, although it wasn't the prettiest, made the difference for us."
Heinemann made his first start of the season last Saturday, playing 90 minutes and registering one of the Whitecaps' three shots on goal.
Vancouver is 2-0-1 at home but has lost three straight to FC Dallas since a 1-0 home victory April 21, 2012. Dallas carries a 349-minute shutout streak over Vancouver into this match dating to Camilo's goal in the 11th minute of that April defeat.