Frisco, TX – Two of the league's hottest clubs clash on Wednesday as FC Dallas hosts the Portland Timbers at FC Dallas Stadium.
Dallas enters Wednesday's game with a league-best 6-1-2 record for 20 points and riding an impressive seven-game unbeaten run in league play, but they could be a bit rusty after 10-day layoff that last saw the club cough up a two-goal lead in a 2-2 draw with the Vancouver Whitecaps on April 27.
Dallas took the lead just nine minutes into the match when the ball deflected into the net off Vancouver defender Andy O'Brien and the visitors widened the margin to 2-0 in the 47th minute through a goal from Matt Hedges.
But Vancouver fought back with goals from Kekuta Manneh and Camilo inside the final 15 minutes and Dallas went a man down with 13 minutes to play when Jackson took a wild swing at Whitecaps defender Alain Rochat and was sent off as the club's settled for a point apiece.
Portland, meanwhile, is coming off a scoreless draw at home with the New England Revolution which ran their unbeaten streak to seven straight as well.
After going winless in their first four matches, Portland's current streak has vaulted them into a tie for second place in the Western Conference with Real Salt Lake and the Los Angeles Galaxy.
New head coach Caleb Porter has his club firing on all cylinders, but was still a bit disappointed by the home draw with struggling New England.
"It's not what we wanted," Porter said. "We expected to win as we expect to win every game. It was a good reminder that it's not just going to happen. We certainly had enough chances to score the goal to win the game. In the end, you've got to credit their goalkeeper, he made some great saves. I also felt a part of that was us maybe not being as sharp as we could've been in-and-around the final third.
"This is soccer. There are games when you can't find the goal and I thought that was the case today," Porter continued. "We'll move on from it, obviously it's not a loss it's a tie and we get a point and yet we're feeling like we let two points slip away. If you don't win, you're not going to be satisfied. We're not satisfied with a point, but it's also not the end of the world. We've played nine games now and we've only been beaten one time, so that's a real positive."
Portland also has some additional injury concerns as Mikael Silvestre left last week's game with an ACL tear and will miss the remainder of the season. To fill his void, the club inked defender Pa Moudo Kah, a veteran of the Dutch Eredivisie.
Kah, 32, joins the Timbers after spending the last two seasons with clubs in Qatar and Saudi Arabia. Kah has also featured for top clubs in Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands during his career.
He won a title with Norway's Valerenga in 2002 and played in nearly 200 league matches over seven seasons (2004-11) at Dutch side Roda JC. On the international level, Kah has 10 caps with the Norway National Team.
In three all-time meetings between the clubs in Texas, FC Dallas holds a 2-0-1 advantage with 10 goals scored.