MLS Preview and Prediction: Philadelphia Union vs FC Dallas

Competition: Major League Soccer – Philadelphia Union vs FC Dallas

Venue: PPL Park – Saturday, March 21 – 16:00 ET (20:00 GMT )

Match Odds: Philadelphia Union 23/20 – Draw 23/10 – FC Dallas 12/5

Match Preview

Philadelphia Union take on FC Dallas at PPL Park on Saturday in gameweek three of the 2015 MLS season. 

The game was originally scheduled for Friday evening but was postponed due to snow, so will now be played on Saturday instead.

Philadelphia Union have drawn their first two games, although only a late Alvaro Saborio penalty narrowly denied the Union of their first win of the 2015 campaign in last weekend’s trip to Real Salt Lake, which ended 3-3 after a pulsating game.

FC Dallas are currently top of the Western Conference and Supporters’ Shield standings and as the only team that has won their first two games of the 2015 season, they will be full of confidence.

Philadelphia Head Coach Jim Curtin will probably see last weekend’s draw with RSL as a more positive result than the opening day 0-0 draw with the Colorado Rapids, but this game should be the toughest test so far and will provide a good marker of where the Union currently are.

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FC Dallas are a strong side, so if Philadelphia can secure all three points then it shows that they need to be taken seriously, although the Union haven’t won any of their last four home games in MLS, so they’ll need to break that trend.

Dallas edged a 1-0 victory on the first day of the season thanks to an injury time winner from Blas Perez against San Jose Earthquakes and then sealed an impressive 3-1 win over Sporting Kansas City at the Toyota Stadium last time out.

The trip to PPL Park will mark the first game on the road for head coach Oscar Pareja and his Dallas side who will be looking to continue their 100% winning record in 2015 by making it three out of three.

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Philadelphia have never beaten Dallas in eight attempts in all competitions (D5, L3), so they will be making history if they can secure a win on Friday night.

The last game between these two sides was a 1-1 draw in the US Open Cup in August 2014. FC Dallas came out on top in the last MLS clash with a 2-1 win in July 2014.

Despite the home advantage, Philadelphia Union will probably be seen as slight underdogs against a Dallas side that have made an extremely impressive start to the new campaign.

Team News

Philadelphia Union goalkeeper Andre Blake is out with a knee injury and forward C. J. Sapong is also unlikely to feature as he has a fractured cheekbone. Midfielder Danny Cruz is suffering with a hamstring strain and missed the game with Real Salt Lake, so he may not be available.

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FC Dallas will be without defender Stephen Keel who is out with a foot injury. Dallas are likely to remain unchanged from the lineup that beat SKC last weekend.

Key Points

Philadelphia Union’s form: D/D

FC Dallas’s form: W/W 

Key Stat: There have been four red cards in seven MLS meetings between these two sides, so we could be in for a feisty encounter.

Key Player: Blas Perez – The experienced forward has notched three goals in his first two games of the 2015 season and he’s hit the ground running. Philadelphia have got a job on their hands to stop the 34-year-old.

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Score Prediction

Philadelphia Union 1-2 FC Dallas – FC Dallas have enjoyed the perfect start to the season and Philadelphia will make life difficult for them, but the visitors should just about edge this one.


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