Frisco, TX (Sports Network) - FC Dallas and the Portland Timbers will meet at
FC Dallas Stadium on Saturday with both clubs looking to make it six points
from two Major League Soccer matches.
Both sides earned home victories to start their respective 2012 seasons as FC
Dallas avenged its 2011 postseason exit by defeating Red Bull New York, while
Portland came from behind to cruise past the Philadelphia Union at Jeld-Wen
Schellas Hyndman's team is set to look a bit different in week two though, as
his squad will need to be reshuffled a bit to accommodate some key absences.
FC Dallas talisman Brek Shea will miss Saturday's clash after being called
into the United States U-23 national team for the CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying
Tournament, and Fabian Castillo is questionable after sustaining a knee injury
during the club's win over New York.
"[Castillo] got a pretty good hit on the inside of his knee," Hyndman said.
"My first thoughts are a knee contusion or maybe a strained ligament."
With Shea and Castillo out, Dallas will rely on Panamanian international Blas
Perez up front. He marked his MLS debut with assists on both Dallas goals
against the Red Bulls, and Hyndman will be looking for more of the same
throughout the year.
"I thought he did a very good job holding the ball under pressure," Hyndman
said. "He might be that striker that we were looking for since we lost Jeff
Cunningham [in 2010]. I think he's going to score a lot of goals for us this
Portland has a similar player in its ranks who also made an impact in his MLS
The arrival of Kris Boyd was highly anticipated by the Timbers Army, and the
Scottish striker did not disappoint as he nodded home the go-ahead goal for
Portland in the second half against Philadelphia.
"I'm hoping that he can go on, stay healthy, go on to score a lot of goals and
become a legend here," Timbers coach John Spencer said. "He definitely has the
goal-scoring ability to do that, that's why he's here."
Saturday's clash could prove to be an important first step for the Timbers.
The club did not fare well on the road in 2011, posting a 2-9-6 record away
from Jeld-Wen Field. But Spencer recognizes that if his team is to contend for
a playoff spot, they will need to take more points from their travels.
"We've got to play well on the road," Spencer said. "I think we're a little
bit more mature this year, hopefully, and I'd like to see us go down to Dallas
and put on a similar type of performance."