Saturday, July 7, 2012
FC Dallas looks to end 12-game win drought
By ESPN.com wire services
The San Jose Earthquakes saw their three-game winning streak end earlier this week without having their starting goalkeeper available.
The Western Conference-leading Earthquakes hope to have Jon Busch back in net when they try to start a new run Saturday night with a visit to last-place FC Dallas.
San Jose (11-4-3) is trying to stay ahead of Real Salt Lake for first place in the West, and it's currently three points up with a game in hand.
After closing June with three consecutive wins, the Earthquakes opened the new month on a disappointing note, losing 2-1 at Portland on Tuesday.
"We're a good team with a great attitude," said Alan Gordon, who scored his sixth goal -- tying him with Steven Lenhart for second on the team behind league leader Chris Wondolowski (14). "We take one game at a time and I feel that this team has something special.
"You know a lot of teams would hang their head after a loss like this. We just keep our heads looking forward and continue to push."
San Jose used backup goaltender David Bingham after Busch suffered a corneal abrasion that caused him to leave the team's 4-3 win over Los Angeles last Saturday. Busch, who has started 16 of the team's 18 games, is feeling better and is expected to return at Dallas.
It may not matter who starts. San Jose has yet to lose back-to-back games this season, while last-place FC Dallas is 0-7-5 during a franchise-record 12-game winless streak.
Dallas (3-9-6) had to settle for a 1-1 draw against Toronto on Wednesday after giving up the tying goal in the 31st minute. It was the sixth time during this drought that it scored first.
Even the return of David Ferreira, the 2010 MLS MVP who had been sidelined for more than a year with a broken ankle, couldn't help. He came on as a substitute in the 57th minute and took one shot.
"I thought we created some good chances in the second half when David went on," coach Schellas Hyndman told Dallas' official website. "I thought there was some good penetrating balls, whether the service wasn't there or the guy wasn't able to get to the ball or somebody blocked the shot."
Scoring has been an issue for Dallas, which has nine goals over its 0-7-5 stretch and two in the last three. Playing at home hasn't helped as Dallas has recorded three goals in its last six games in Frisco.
San Jose outscored Dallas 6-2 -- Wondolowski scored three times -- while sweeping last season's series after eight of the previous 11 meetings ended in a draw. The teams face each other again July 18.