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FC Dallas extends unbeaten streak, ties RBNY

DallasRedBulls (GettyImages)

Whoever said regular season MLS games are boring might have have been convinced otherwise on Thursday night after watching the New York Red Bulls and FC Dallas battle through a dramatic, fiesty and entertaining 2-2 draw at Pizza Hut Park on Thursday night.

FCD extended its unbeaten streak to 15 matches, but paid a big price, with goalkeeper Kevin Hartman and veteran midfielder Daniel Hernandez suffering knee injuries that forced them to leave the match before the second half.

Dallas rookie Eric Alexander stole the show, setting up a Milton Rodriguez goal before scoring his own brilliant run and finish to give FCD a 2-1 lead despite being a man down due to a Brek Shea red card. The Red Bulls pressed for an equalizer and found one when Jair Benitez re-directed a Joel Lindpere cross into his own net to tie the score at 2-2.

The match was a fiesty affair which included Shea's red card for an ugly tackle on Chris Albright and Hartman's injury, which came during the most controversial moment of the evening. After Mehdi Ballouchy scored in his Red Bulls debut, Henry ran over to kick the ball, but Hartman lifted his foot next to the ball just as Henry kicked, which sent the ball into his foot, generating enough force to sprain his right MCL. Hartman was forced to leave the match at halftime with an injury that could force him to miss several weeks.

Ballouchy earned the start in place of Juan Pablo Angel, who started the match on the bench. The former Rapids playmaker raced onto a Lindpere cross to bury New York's first goal just before halftime, canceling out an early finish from Milton Rodriguez.

FC Dallas outplayed New York early in the second half despite being a man down, with its midfielders outworking the Red Bulls' midfield despite playing without the dangerous Shea. Alexander gave Dallas a 2-1 lead after an incisive run into the penalty area led to a quality finish past Bouna Coundoul.

The Red Bulls started to show more purpose in their attack later in the second half and ultimately found an equalizer when Lindpere sent a cross in toward Angel that Benitez headed into his own net.

The draw was an impressive result for a Dallas side that played 61 minutes down a man. FCD lost Hernandez to an injury and Shea to a red card just two minutes apart, giving the Red Bulls a chance to take control of the match, but save for a few flashes, New York never could put Dallas away despite having the better of the play in the first half.

The tie leaves New York three points behind the Columbus Crew in the East standings, while also pulling FC Dallas within two points of Real Salt Lake for second place in the West.

Here are the match highlights:

What did you think of the match? Impressed with FC Dallas? Think Henry should have been sent off for injuring Hartman, or did you think it was a fluke play? Liking the Ballouchy acquisition?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. FC Dallas being down a man early in the match, also loosing Hernandez during the first half a key player for FCD’s lineup and loosing the Goal keeper of the month in Hartman, and FCD plays with “no” designated players and “NYRB STILL COULDN’T PUT THEM AWAY” Redbulls were really lucky to come away with a point in Dallas. “I think your the one that should have a really bad taste is your mouth”

  2. I agree with NY playing better when 11 v 11; I can even say the 1-0 was undeserved for Dallas who had ONE shot on goal (the goal at that point)
    A red card is a red card, a deserved red card!!
    The 2-2 was the fair result even though I think NY would have won 11 v 11 since Dallas would’ve had to open up (NY better suited). Dallas did not see the ball when playing even….scary possession by NY

  3. Rob, that is NOT what Hartman was saying… He is simply trying to cool off the media, but it is clear (as I was in the locker room after the match and heard the quotes) that hartman and FCD hold TH responsible for a silly, stupid, and totally unnecessary action.

    Let me also point out that I found it ridiculous that TH was asking Lloyd to admit he’d kicked a ball out for a corner when the ref called a goal kick… Man, watch Henry ask another player to admit wrong-doing was simply the height of hypocrisy.

    TH is/was world class, but his on the field actions clearly show off a less than desirable lack of sportsmanship.

  4. He had 45 mins on the bench to cool down. When you get hurt, you get angry. He realized he was at fault for his injury, and like I said I have to give it to the guy.

  5. He didn’t look too happy about it right afterwards, when Henry approached him and tried to talk about it. I wonder what happened between then and the press comments?

  6. Sorry, I just figured someone else would explain. Also, generally speaking MLS posts don’t generate as many comments and don’t have people comming back to check what others said after they posted. The european posts can have arguements/discussion/rants go on for days it seems.

    The MLS players can still be traded after the international transfer deadline, but they can only be traded amongst MLS teams. Since the league owns all the contracts, that is not a “real” transfer. The MLS could allow trades amongst its teams all season outside the transfer window but puts a trade deadline on about six weeks before the playoffs to keep teams from stacking up right at the playoffs.

  7. Henry was frustrated all night because he wasn’t getting balls played to his feet. So, He decided to be a sore sport and kick the ball into hartmans foot? The ball was laying right in front of Hartman, there was no way he could put it in the back of the net with Hartman standing there. Henry could have gone to celebrate with his teammates instead of injuring our goalie.

    #24 showed some great skills.

    (SBI-Collin, that’s not how it went at all. Henry looked right at Hartman before he went to kick the ball and at that time Hartman was making no motion as if he were going to try and retrieve the ball. It was only after Henry began his wind up to kick that Hartman then stepped to the side and stuck his foot out (Henry put his head down and focused on the ball as Hartman moved toward the ball. Not saying Hartman did it on purpose, but at the very least it was just really bad timing. The idea that Henry went to kick the ball AFTER seeing Hartman with it is completely false.)

  8. I don’t think NY looked better when it was 11v11, but I do think both defenses looked shaky as hell. Maybe losing a player made the FCD defenders focus a little more, even though they did give up a goal later. If was 11v11 I think it could have ended up 3-3 or so.

  9. Just giving you a bit of a hard time. Although I will say I don’t think you’ve given Dallas the respect they deserve. A team that has battled injuries to key players – Dax, George John, etc and continued their streak of games without a loss is a good team. I do think with an 11 – 11 game you would have seen something like 3-1 Dallas. NY’s defense did not impress me at all. They looked shaky. Their attacking players, while skilled, still seem to be a bit off in how they relate with one another.

    The question I suppose is going to be: At what point does the house fall down. Yesterday’s injuries to Hernandez and Hartman may be too much to overcome. At some point we’ll run out of players. Just hope they’re all back for playoffs.

    By the way, was it me or did that ref yesterday leave quite a bit to be desired?

  10. Someone correct me if I’m mistaken but I believe that was the end of the international transfer window and the MLS transfer window hasn’t closed yet (though the roster freeze is either here already or is coming really soon).

  11. The post-card shoving and putting his hands on the ref, after returning the field after leaving, is going to result in either a large fine or an extra game suspension.

  12. Players have superstitions and I think one of Henry’s superstitions is that he has to blast the ball into the net after every goal (not scored by himself of course). I could be wrong, but I have noticed that after goals he seems to like to do that. This time when he did it, Hartman put his foot in the way, might be bad but stuff like that just happens at times.

  13. You know, watching the replay of the goal (since MLS didn’t show their new poster boy being a tool in the replay of the game) it’s worst then I remembered. The ball bounces out of the goal and stopse between the legs of Zak Lloyd, who is sitting on the ground. That means that ball came back, was stopped, then Lloyd gets up and moves away from the ball while Harman is clearly going to get the ball and Henry goes and kicks it. Why not go celebrate with your new teammate on his first goal with NY? Why decide to take a little target practice while the rest of the team are celebrating?

    Also, Brek Shea is going to get a little more then just a one game suspension since he walks away after the card, turns around, comes back to the ref and puts his hands on him to yell at him.

  14. You know, that Shea tackle was a sign that for all his skills, he’s still like most youngsters and doesn’t know enough yet. Just because you hit the ball first doesn’t mean that any tackles okay, especially not two footed scissor attacks from behind that could really, really hurt someone. He just made a beautiful play before that and his play was really solid earlier and he just went crazy.

  15. It was unnecessary. I’d understand if the ball had just bounced back out of the net and Henry kicked it again into the net (although even that would get a yellow card in high school soccer), but Hartman had stopped the ball’s role and was standing right behind it. There’s no way Henry hits that ball that it doesn’t potentially hit Hartman.

    That said, following the first airing of the replay I thought I saw Hartman walk normally, then suddenly get hurt. I had thought he was faking it to try to get Henry a red card. Later it seemed more genuine.

  16. I can side with the 4-5-1 comment. I wrote my post as I was waking up this morning and was still bitter about the result. I actually had a dream last night in which RBNY would score a goal and Dallas would then reply with another goal to level the score…only the dream seemed like forever and the score ended up being 5-5. That’s how disappointed I was by the result – it invaded my sleep. But to Henry, I’m a little greedy and want more from him. I don’t need world-class for 90 minutes, but I just want to see him be involved and effective. No JPA up top with him does hinder that though.

  17. You know what’s really hypocritical, the way the American mainstream media latched onto Henry’s handball as cheating and Suarez’s goal stoping handball as cheating, and soccer players in general for faking like an injury is worse then it was, then turns around and freakin’ praises their Saint Dereck Jeter for pretending to get hit with a baseball to give the Yankees an advantage to try and steal a game and the division title.

    It’s okay if it’s an American pretending to be hurt I guess.

  18. To me, Dallas is clearly the better team. 10 men saved NY last night.

    BTW, the chat prediction of 2-1 win for NYRB is Rafa played was wildly off. 2-2 with Rafa in AND FCD at 10 men. That is what it takes to make NY = Dallas.

    (SBI-Ben, wildly off? I picked 2-1 and it was 2-2. If that’s your definition of “wildly off” I can’t help you buddy. It was an even game with Dallas getting the edge because of playing despite being a man down. It’s easy to say the red card “saved NY” but there’s really no way to know how the game would have gone without it, and the reality is that New York was the better team when it was 11v11. Some teams can kill a game with a man advantage. Some teams struggle to break down a bunkering team. New York was the latter.)

  19. 1) Fantastic Peter Crouch impression by Shea with that gangly tackle.

    2) I love how the announcers on that highlight video continually credit the last Red Bulls goal to Angel, even when the replays clearly show that it was an own goal.

  20. Listen, I’m not going to say it was the right decision or wrong decision to leave JPA on the bench last night. Personally, I didn’t mind it but I thought the substitution should have came at the half. But we know JPA is a little injury-prone and he picks up a lot of little knocks. Who’s to say that Backe didn’t want to give his top forward a rest when on the road against a physical and defensively stout team? That was my take on the matter. Even top forwards in top leagues get some games and minutes off from time to time.

  21. That bad taste might be from something else…
    Hartman is 50% culpable for the injury. He stupidly put his foot in front of the ball when Henry was clearly en route to re-blast it into the net. Chalk it up to bad luck.
    NY played well, despite using a player who joined the club two days earlier. Given the new lineup, I’d say a draw is fair, and Ballouchy obviously had a great start.
    10-man teams often bunker and play compact defense, so the draw isn’t surprising.
    Bottom line, as an NY fan, is that Ballouchy is great addition but needs to start for Tchani, not JPA. Also, NY clearly plays better when there’s lots of space and a free-flowing game. Bunker ball ain’t their thing.
    In the end, wild match in Dallas. Fun to watch, and both teams deserve playoff spots.

  22. Brian K, you literally show how ill-informed you are with every new post… Thierry Henry i dont think has ever whined… perhaps the occasional shrug, but he has mastered the game… And dont bring international football into a league thread… And youre not irish so dont act like youre affected by that handball in which the ref was to blame.

  23. “The ball was there and like I do sometimes, I just wanted to kick the ball back in the net,” Henry said.

    Why? Henry can be a real tool. Handballs in the box and kicks after the whistle. I don’t care how he justifies his actions, that’s still completely unnecessary.

  24. Oh I see Ives caught that. The announcers completely missed it, though, even after three replays they were still talking about how unique Angel’s ability to get on the end of crosses is.

  25. I think people are looking into this JPA getting benched thing way too much. We’re pretty much guaranteed to make the playoffs. So why not give the 34 year old a little rest before that time comes. I think the only reason Hans put him in the end of the game, was to at least salvage a point. If we win two more games, we’re in. So I wouldn’t be surprised if Backe rests a couple other guys before the playoffs start too. And I think the whole Henry thing was a stupid mistake. Was it intentional? No. Was it stupid? Yes. It was one of those fluke plays that you just shake your head at, but never really get pissed at the guy. I also think Rafa needs to rest a game. He is looking like he is getting tired out there. He has played in a lot of games this summer.

  26. And for all of you that think Henry should have been carded read what Hartman said about the incedent:

    “I’m not real sure exactly how it happened,” Hartman said. “We’d given up the goal, obviously, and it was just one of those things where he wanted to get the ball back to midfield or whatever. Henry went to hit the ball and I tried to intercede, and unfortunately got hurt.

    “I’m pretty bummed about it. You obviously want to play as much as possible and to have to come out because of an injury that happens pretty much in dead time is disappointing.”

    Stand up guy for trying to disperse the fire. I give Hartman a lot of credit.

  27. Mehdi Ballouchy looked solid for New York last night.

    I’m fairly new to MLS, so pardon the ignorance, but what am I missing when it comes to the MLS transfer window? I thought it ended awhile back. Why are players still zipping to and from teams?

  28. miller definitely looked tired most of that game.
    and though ream had a pretty good game, he was ball-watching on that first goal and should not have allowed an open header.
    henry was missing angel in the first half, that was pretty clear. the 4-5-1 wasn’t too comfortable for some players.

  29. I was pissed he left JPA on the bench. Henry as a lone striker allows the double team he had on him all night, as the midfield is not as dangerous. After the game I was even more upset at Hans as he said he would like Bellouchy to become more of a second striker. Very bad move asJPA and Henry seem to work so well with each other

  30. I don’t think anyone would care if you left these boards….. Constantly whinned to ref’s, laughable you dont watch many Red Bulls games do you.

    By the way, a player from almost every team has kicked the ball in the back of the net after someone else scores, its very common, I guess all of those other MLS players should go to France as well… Get real

  31. Hey Brain I am with you. But I am sure if you talk to Hans this game and every game is JPA fault. He thinks if you get rid of JPA the team will be a powerhouse. I hope everyone remembers that without a good striker like JPA Henry will be nothing in NY. Lets see what their record is next year without the heart and soul of this team.

  32. Since the “I didn’t mean it” double-hand-ball against Ireland, Henry has dropped vastly in my estmation. Since he’s come to MLS he’s constantly whined at the refs for faux-fouls and last night’s injury of Hartman was just idiotic. Even if no one is around, kicking the ball back into the net after your team has already scored is juvenile and poor sportsmanship. I’ll admit he raises the level of play immensely–there’s no denying his talent–but the league aught to suspend him for a match. If he goes back to France, I won’t be sorry.

  33. The quality of possession is improving from RBNY (even before being a man up), but the attacking threats were pretty sparse. Frustrating display last night, especially when you have to listen to Shep Messing. Tchani was wasteful with a lot of his distribution. He looked nervous for the first time in awhile. Not sure if he’s feeling the pressure to perform from the Ballouchy trade. The one positive is having Ballouchy get on the score sheet in his first match – always good for your confidence in a new squad.

    Can anyone tell me what Roy Miller was doing on the 2nd goal (and most of the game)? Not to mention the sloppy turnover in the middle by Marquez (I believe).

    I’m sorry to be “that guy”, but after last night’s performance I’m going to start questioning Henry’s commitment. He was slow (for his standards) and lazy. That first ball put through by Marquez early on should have at least been a shot on goal. And there were a few times where he was set up on the left hand side at the top of the box and I’m waiting for him to show a little vintage Henry and make that quick step to the right and shoot. Disappointed. But that’s just my view.

  34. Heath Pearce has got to be one of the better defenders in mls. yet noone talks much about him. He and the mustache are both under appreciated. he is statistically the best right back in mls and it isnt even his natural position. He is one of the main reasons why FC Dallas has remained unbeaten. He has to be in contention for defender of the year. Or at least MLS best 11.


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