The time frame between May 23 and June 19 is a period FC Dallas would rather forget.
During that time, the Hoops managed zero wins, going 0-2-3, suffered to losses of three or more goals and slipped from the top of the conference to fighting of a playoff spot. And all of this came away from Toyota Stadium.
In fact, the only bright spot in that nearly month-long span came in the form of a 4-1 win at TCU’s soccer stadium in the U.S. Open Cup against USL side Oklahoma City.
So it’s safe to say that FC Dallas has missed their home in Frisco.
But there is good news for the Hoops. First, they’re still in a spot to be in the postseason if the season ended today. Thanks to their hot start, they’re in sixth on 23 points and just one point ahead of San Jose for the final spot. Given the way they’ve spiraled down, that’s not too bad, especially considering that Seattle leads the Western Conference with just 29 points. That distance can be made up of the course of the rest of the season.
And second, they’re headed into a really good position to win their next game, which is an absolute must-win to turn the season around.
First, FC Dallas’ opponent for Friday is Texas rival Houston and the recent history between the two sides has been very, very generous to the team in red. The Hoops have defeated the Dynamo in each of the last five meetings, including two 4-1 wins and two victories in U.S. Open Cup competition. It’s truly been just a domination by FC Dallas over that team down I-45 and given the way the Dynamo have played this season, it’s really hard to see the Hoops having difficulty at least staying in this game. And at best, it’ll be yet another dominating performance from the Frisco side.
And second, the Hoops are getting a chance to play home in over a month, and that has been a safe haven for this team. FC Dallas has scored four wins at home, settled for two draws and suffered one loss — a 4-0 defeat to Colorado — at Toyota Stadium. The offense has also been a lot better in Frisco, scoring 1.2 goals per game including two 3-goal performances against Sporting KC and Toronto. And the defense has been much improved, keeping three clean sheets and not allowing opponents to score more than two goals, aside from that one match against Columbus.
Of course, it might take more than just playing at home to turn this win drought around. There were some really bad performances during that five-match road trip. The offensive attack has to get much better and the defense really needs Zach Lloyd and Matt Hedges to be healthy.
But a turnaround has to begin somewhere and this Friday against a Houston team that FC Dallas has the number on is as good as anytime to start the comeback. And this team desperately needs a win now.