Kansas City, KS (SportsNetwork.com) - The defending MLS Cup champions will make their home debut for the 2014 season when Sporting Kansas City hosts FC Dallas on Saturday.
Sporting made a losing start to the new campaign, suffering a narrow defeat at Seattle Sounders FC. It looked as if Kansas City would escape CenturyLink Field with a point, but Chad Barrett struck at the death to deny the reigning champs a share of the spoils.
It was the fifth time in seven matches that Sporting conceded the winning goal to the Sounders in stoppage-time and it also snapped a four-game winning streak in season openers for SKC.
"This is not an easy place to play being the first game of the season and their home opener. I thought we played very well for 93 minutes and 43 seconds," said Sporting manager Peter Vermes. "We did a really good job on both sides. Defensively we were very disciplined. We had one lapse in our defensive shape overall, and that was in the last 17 seconds. It's unfortunate. We probably should've gotten a lot more coming out of this game because we had some really good chances as well, but that's the way it goes."
FC Dallas, meanwhile, enjoyed a bright start to life under new head coach Carlos Pareja. The club produced three goals in 31 minutes of play over two halves to claim a 3-2 win over the Montreal Impact on Saturday at Toyota Stadium.
"It's great to start with a win. There are a lot of things that we need to put into effect in the game to see what we want," Pareja said. "I have to say that the boys are pleased with the results of the game tonight.
"Little by little ... it's an on-going process. It's a long season. They were happy, but they know there is a long way to go."
Blas Perez got on the scoresheet against Montreal to pick up where he left off in 2013. The Panamanian netted 11 goals last year for Dallas with five coming over the final 10 games of the season. Fabian Castillo, who scored just twice in 2013, also netted a goal against the Impact, proving just how dangerous he can be.
"Castillo showed all of his potential, with the six or seven plays and the quality ... He brings a lot of quality to the flanks every game," Pareja said.