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MLS Roundup: Dallas remains perfect, scoreless draws galore

FC Dallas have earned the maximum nine points after three games. NYC and Orlando experience some growing pains in week 3.

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New England Revolution 0, Montreal Impact 0

You’re probably in for a game as rough on the eyes as it is on the players, when seven yellow cards and a red card are issued. Montreal saw their up-and-coming forward Cameron Porter land very awkwardly on his left ankle and leg just before the 20th minute. The best scoring opportunity for either team fell to Dominic Oduro in minute 44. The former Fire attacker dragged his shot inches wide of the Revs goal. In the 61st minute, any chance the Impact had to take three points largely went out the window. Hassoun Camara picked up a second yellow and subsequent red after dragging Juan Agudelo from behind by his shirt. Overall it was a messy game that 14,000+ at Gillette Stadium had the misfortune of sitting through.

Colorado Rapids 0, New York City 0

So you know that round up of Revs vs Impact you just read? This is going to sound somewhat familiar. Things were interesting early on, especially in the 8th minute when Rapids winger Gabriel Torres sent Josh Saunders diving near post to block a well-placed shot.

The second half saw six yellow cards and one red shown; all but one were awarded to NYCFC players. Colorado forward Dominique Badji started off the yellow parade after a hand ball in the 49th minute. NYC’s right back Shay Facey was the first blue to earn a card, following it up 31 minutes later with a second yellow and a sending off. Man City West went into contain mode immediately after, all the while finishing with a higher possession percentage than the lackluster Rapids. Josh Saunders and Chris Wingert were both shown yellow for time wasting in stoppage time, cementing the bus-parking clinic.

Philadelphia Union 0, FC Dallas 2

100%. That’s the percentage of points earned by FC Dallas this young season. The Sons of Ben let referee Jose Rivero have it in the 42nd minute after a questionable red card was given to midfielder Zach Pfeffer. Being a man up at the start of the second half was all the advantage that Dallas needed. Last season’s rookie of the year Tesho Akindele found the back of the net four minutes in.

The goal came once Akindele dispossessed defender Steven Vitoria and released a cool, calm and lethal finish from just inside the box past Union keeper Rais M’bolhi. Icing was delivered to the cake via the right foot of Ryan Hollingshead in minute 59. From roughly the same distance as Akindele, the 23 year old midfielder - cleverly side stepped a Union defender before sending the ball goal bound – had been a halftime sub for Michel. Oscar Pareja is heading a well-oiled machine at the moment and knows exactly which buttons to press.

Orlando City 0, Vancouver Whitecaps 1

Octavio Rivero played spoiler for the home team once again. His winner in Chicago was an absolute dagger, but this may have stung the Orlando faithful worse, as it came at the last possible second. The first half was marred by – you guessed it – yellow cards (c’mon refs, let them play). Outside of the cards, there was some fine finesse passing on display especially via Orlando. It was still Vancouver and eventual game-winner Rivero, who came closest in the 35th minute as his shot hit the crossbar. In the 6th minute of stoppage time, the Uruguayan made amends by getting at the end of a Pedro Morales free kick, diving, with the ball seemingly ricocheting off the back of his head, sailing past Donovan Ricketts.

Sporting Kansas City 0, Portland Timbers 0

Sporting Park was rocking at full capacity as always. It’s too bad for those in attendance that the teams doing battle couldn’t put in the same effort. In the final nil-nil draw on Saturday, there were only two yellow cards given. This match was more a case of frustrating possession and missed chances. No chance was as laced in gold as the one Ike Opara had in the 9th minute. Marcel de Jong swung in a perfect corner kick that Opara met with his head but only managed to hit the side netting. Dom Dwyer continues his disappointing start for SKC thus far. Their chances hinge largely on him getting it together and producing.

LA Galaxy 1, Houston Dynamo 1

Saturday’s finale began as if a goal fest would ensue. Robbie Keane scored quickly for LA in the 3rd minute, causing Dynamo fans everywhere to break out the #CoyleOut hashtags. The Irishman sliced his way through multiple defenders. After shaking off the final one, Keane slotted past an oncoming Tyler Deric, who got a piece of the ball, but couldn’t prevent it from floating in. Eight minutes later, midfielder Nathan Sturgis allayed the Houston faithful’s worries with an alert run into the box, and poking home a headed pass.

Early in the second half, Keane would have a chance at a brace but sent his shot just high. Just two minutes later Baggio Husidic would come within inches of heading LA into the lead after a pristine Stefan Ishizaki cross. LA’s final chance fell to none other than Alan Gordon who almost headed in his second stoppage time goal in as many weeks. The Galaxy were unfortunate to come away with three points. Houston will be happy to have secured the point but must be frustrated by the lack of scoring chances.

New York Red Bulls 2, D.C United 0

One only needs to look at the team sheet to notice all the new faces at NYRB. For Ali Curtis and Jesse Marsch, it only took two games to notch their first win after some heavy rebuilding. Reigning golden boot winner Bradley Wright-Phillips scored first for New York in the 25th minute. The goal started off with a long ball that would make any tiki-taka snob vomit in their tracks. What BWP did with his dribbling skill in the box was exciting, and his finishing, clinical. Lloyd Sam continued to show that he can bear the brunt of the scoring deficit that accrued once Thierry Henry retired. In the 71st minute the thirty year old from Leeds sent a laser past Bill Hamid at his near post just as Taylor Twellman was signing the young goalkeepers praises. Jinx. D.C United looked lethargic and Ben Olsen knew it.

San Jose 2, Chicago Fire 1

See recap. As always, the Fire were the sacrificial stadium openers. At least they scored a goal.