Colorado Rapids 1, FC Dallas 1 | MLS Match Recap
COMMERCE CITY, Colo. – Playing each other for the second time in three weeks, the Colorado Rapids and FC Dallas took their Western Conference showdown to Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in a match that proved to be both tighter and more physical than the previous encounter. After 95 minutes of back and forth play, both teams took home a point from Friday night’s 1-1 draw.
A second-half red card from FC Dallas' Blas Perez was the turning point in the game, as his foul away from the ball on Rapids defender Drew Moor led to his ejection in the 59th minute. With the visitors reduced to 10 men for the final half hour, the lead gained by Mauro Diaz's first-half goal for Dallas was wiped away by a late equalizer courtesy of Colorado's Nick LaBrocca.
The first half was often marked by lulls in play, though punctuated at times by chances for both teams. Dallas looked poised to draw first blood early with Perez sending in an early chance in the fifth minute, but Rapids goalkeeper Clint Irwin swept in to keep the game scoreless.
In the 28th minute, Colorado looked poised to take the initial lead, but the effort from Gabriel Torres on the right wing was initially deflected by Dallas goalkeeper Dan Kennedy, making his first start for the club, and Juan Ramirez was unable to get there for the tap in.
After Dallas had gathered themselves, Fabian Castillo got a shot off on the ensuing counterattack, but his effort in the 29th minute was pushed well over the bar.
Castillo continued to cause fits for the Rapids' defense and minutes later, he sliced through the backline to dish the ball to Diaz, who buried a low shot to give FCD the 1-0 lead in the 32nd minute.
A good string of passes from Colorado nearly resulted in an equalizer in the 37th minute, but a header from Ramirez was hit high and wide of the mark.
Colorado continued to look to get on level terms to start off the second half, but the shot from just outside the box from Dillon Powers curled just outside the right post.
Following Perez's ejection just before the hour mark, the game became quite chippy for the next 10 or so minutes, with Kellyn Acosta drawing a quick yellow card for a hard challenge on Ramirez and Dallas captain Matt Hedges having to come out of the game after taking an elbow to the head from Axel Sjoberg.
But with the man advantage, Colorado gained the upper hand and Dallas attempted to bunker and hold on to their lead, which proved futile in the end.
After a dominant run of possession, Colorado’s efforts were rewarded when a long ball from Lucas Pittinari was sent through to Powers, heading it to LaBrocca to finish the play and even the score at 1-1 in the 79th minute.
But Colorado were unable to grab the late lead, settling for a point in the draw.
The Rapids’ first home win of 2015 will continue to be put on hold, as the team returns to the road to face New York Red Bulls on Wednesday.
Dallas will return to Texas to face rivals Houston in another Western Conference matchup next Friday.