May 30, 2018; Carson, CA, USA; FC Dallas forward Cristian Colman (9) controls the ball in front of Los Angeles Galaxy defender Daniel Steres (5) in the first half at StubHub Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
FC Dallas defeated the Los Angeles Galaxy 3-2 Wednesday night in Carson, Calif. Dallas was led by goals from Ryan Hollingshead, Cristian Colman, and Carlos Gruezo. Here are some takeaways from the match.
Hollingshead takes advantage
Anton Nedyalkov is currently out with a broken collarbone, meaning a temporary replacement was needed.
Enter Ryan Hollingshead, the fifth year pro from UCLA. Hollingshead is one of the more versatile players on the team, able to play winger and fullback on either side. With that versatility, he almost always has a spot on the team. He strides up and down the pitch and drops back as well. Hollingshead can be a more-than-capable wingback and showed attributes of that during the win.
“Honestly, I don’t remember how I got to the middle of the field,” Hollingshead said postmatch. “That wasn’t supposed to be the plan. I was supposed to be out wide. But I know Mauro drifted out wide, and so when I saw him drifting out wide, I tried to get in the middle and get on the end of a cross. Then as he got the ball, I just realized I had tons of space at the top of the box, so I was screaming for it. He played it to my feet and it was just an open finish from there. I had to just kind of bend it around a guy to get it there, but it was good.”
Hollingshead’s goal was team movement at its finest. As he played the ball to Diaz, Hollingshead shifted to the middle of the pitch. He played a give-and-go with Ulloa and continued to stay in that middle spot. Diaz found Hollingshead in the middle and he was able to put it past Bingham.
Hollingshead has those attacking characteristics that allow him to be dangerous from anywhere on the pitch.
His assist was created by his run up the pitch, finding the head of Cristian Colman for the second goal. He also helped out Jesse Gonzalez and cleared the ball off the goal line late.
Hollingshead should be eyeing more starts in the future, especially with this latest performance. It made the loss of Nedyalkov easier to swallow.
Closing out matches … Round 2
For a second straight match, Dallas needed to close out a tight lead on the road. After Colman was sent off, the Galaxy piled on the pressure late, sending Ola Kamara back to his usual forward role and pumping balls into Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Ibra connected on two of them, but it was a little too late for the Galaxy as Dallas held on.
It was another tough performance from the team on the road. MLS road wins are tough to come by and should be taken, no matter how bad the performance is. Dallas dominated the match until the 80th-minute red card, when things began to start to unravel. It wasn’t smooth sailing, but Dallas handled the pressure and pulled out the win.
It was the type of win that can build character throughout a season. If a team is going to win MLS Cup, it needs experience with gritty wins like this.
Shaky Gonzalez performance
After a brilliant performance against Toronto, goalkeeper Jesse Gonzalez followed up with one of his more undesirable performances late in the Galaxy match.
In the 85th minute, Gonzalez came out awkwardly to the top of his box and flailed at the ball, connecting but also colliding with Kamara. Romain Alessandrini took a couple of dribbles and then a shot, which missed the net and nailed the crossbar.
There was a period of time when Gonzalez made punches that left his team in danger. His distribution was also not good enough and let the Galaxy continue piling on pressure. It was a shocking turnaround from the performance he had just last Friday.
That performance opens the door for Jimmy Maurer once again. Maurer’s poor performance was not as bad, even though it ended in a 2-2 draw. His communication and distribution were much better and he’s shown he is a capable keeper. This is one of the competitive positions on FC Dallas. Each keeper needs to perform at his highest ability. A performance like Gonzalez’s Friday could land him right back on the bench.