Real Salt Lake-FC Dallas Preview
Freddy Juarez expects to face a completely different challenge when Real Salt Lake make the trip to Toyota Stadium to take on an "aggressive" FC Dallas side.
RSL played out a goalless draw with Nashville SC last week, following a week on from a 2-1 loss at home to San Jose Earthquakes.
That brought an end to Salt Lake's two-match winning streak and Juarez is not expecting an easy test against Dallas as his side attempt to get back on track.
"It will be a tough game," he said. "Luchi (Gonzalez) has demonstrated he's not afraid to play his brand of football home or away. They're aggressive and will attack us.
"It will be a totally different style of play to what we saw last week, and different again to two weeks ago against San Jose. Three matches and three different styles.
"They have a good group and know how to get in the playoffs. We'll go there with a positive energy and look to get the points."
Dallas have also collected one point from the last six on offer, drawing 1-1 with Houston Dynamo before going down 1-0 to a late Minnesota United goal last time out.
The Hoops have scored first in only one of their five matches - Andres Ricaurte's opener in the 4-1 win over Portland Timbers - and Gonzalez accepts his side need to start putting their chances away.
"We've got to score that next one," he said. "I think we're at that point. We talked with the group today. We just need one of those to go in.
"Obviously we've got to keep creating more. The more you can create, the more chances you have to score. We'll hold ourselves accountable and try to create more and get more volume."
FC Dallas - Franco Jara
Jara scored a respectable seven goals last season after arriving midway through the season, but he has struggled to get going in his five appearances so far in 2021. Some have questioned whether he is suited to this side, but Gonzalez leapt to his defense this week and the four-cap Argentina international will be looking to repay that faith.
Real Salt Lake - David Ochoa
RSL's clean sheet against Nashville last week was their first of the season, and indeed goalkeeper Ochoa's first in Major League Soccer. The 20-year-old made three saves in that match on his way to becoming the fourth youngest keeper to keep out the opposition in the competition's history.
- The last two meetings between FC Dallas and Real Salt Lake have ended in scoreless draws. Teams have played three straight regular season scoreless draws against one another twice in MLS history - LA Galaxy and Toronto FC from 2010 to 2011 and Chicago and DC from 2002 to 2003.
- Dallas has just one win in its first five matches this season (D2 L2), beating Portland 4-1 on May 1. Dallas scored three goals in the first half of that match but has scored just three times in total in the other four and a half matches they have played.
- Real Salt Lake won its first away match this season, beating Minnesota United 2-1 in St. Paul. RSL has not put together consecutive away wins in MLS since victories at Houston and Colorado in August 2018.
- An MLS-high 81.6 percent of FC Dallas' shots this season have come from inside the box (40/49). All six of the Hoops' goals this season have been scored inside the area.
- Real Salt Lake is one of two teams (along with Sporting Kansas City) that has not conceded a set-piece goal this season.
Updated May 21, 2021