FC Dallas holds serve at home after Avila's late goal deals RSL 2-1 defeat

FC Dallas holds serve at home after Avila's late goal deals RSL 2-1 defeat

MLS- Real Salt Lake

FC Dallas holds serve at home after Avila's late goal deals RSL 2-1 defeat

FCDGetty

The MLS Cup holders are in danger of being shown an early exit from the playoffs.

Substitute Eric Avila's goal on a nifty 18-yard strike in the 88th minute helped FC Dallas overcome Real Salt Lake, 2-1, at Pizza Hut Park Saturday night. Even more menacing for RSL, though, is that it will have to play the home leg next weekend without its playmaking central midfielder.

Javier Morales received two yellow cards, thus suspending him for the second leg of the series at Rio Tinto. FC Dallas' Atiba Harris was also ejected and will be forced to miss the second leg.

Fabian Espindola opened the scoring for the visitors in the fifth minute to give RSL an early lead, but Jeff Cunningham, who came on in the 32nd minute for an injured Milton Rodriguez, tallied the equalizer just before halftime.

Highlights from the match are after the jump:

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What did you think of the match? Do you think Real Salt Lake can overcome the deficit and loss of Morales in the second leg? Impressed with Avila's finish?

Share your thoughts below.

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