Seattle scrapes out a draw with FC Dallas

Published Sunday, November 2, 2014 10:03 PM by Shane Barrow

The Seattle Sounders arrived in Dallas to open the MLS Western Conference semifinals against FC Dallas on a mission.  Get a result to take home for the second leg.  In the end they were able to scrape by and do just that.

FC Dallas got the quick start they were looking for pressing the visiting Sounders and bossing the early goings on in Frisco.  They could not find the early goal though despite the one way traffic for the opening fifteen minutes.  It took that long for Seattle to establish any meaningful possession in the Dallas half, but when they finally did it led to the bet chance in the early going.

Obafemi Martins raced in behind the FCD defense and stared down keeper Raul Fernandez one v one.  The Dallas net minder was up to the task as he pounced on the low Martins shot.

The big play of the opening half came in the 32nd minute when Blas Perez switched a ball to Escobar who dribbled into the box past a pair of Sounders defenders.  Marco Pappa made the silly decision to leave his feet and go for a slide tackle.  He was late and chopped down Escobar for an easy penalty kick call.  Up stepped Michel who rifled home the spot kick for the FCD lead.

Trouble for Seattle, but with the wide open Dallas style of play they had to believe there were more goals in this one.  The Sounders had to be careful to not give up a second though.  Obafemi Martins almost stole a goal right at he death, but Fernandez made the leaping save to preserve the FCD lead at the halftime whistle.

Settle began the second frame on the front foot earning a free kick within a minute.  Clint Dempsey stepped up but curled his drive straight to Raul Fernandez who had no trouble catching.  Dallas certainly did not want to give up that very valuable away goal.  The goal came in the 54th via a perfectly flighted set piece from Marco Pappa.  The great ball found the head of Alonso who flicked home past the helpless Dallas keeper.  The most unlikely of heroes as Alonso had not scored a single goal all year!  Advantage Sounders at 1-1.

Dallas went right back on the attack as the Sounders relaxed a bit after tying the game.  The home fans had to chuckle at the sight of Kenny Cooper entering the game in the 65th.  FCD fans know first hand how useless Cooper is.

The pressure fell to the home team to change the scoreline or face the prospect of having to win in Seattle next Monday.  The Sounders were sitting back inviting FCD forward.  Could they hold out the final ten minutes?  Barely was the answer as Frei made a brilliant sprawling save on a Fabian Castillo drive.  Big time save.

All even heading back to Seattle, but with the Sounders holding the away goal.