Here are my observations about the Western Conference Final Sunday night between LA Galaxy and FC Dallas:
- LA Galaxy were awful when it came to passing, particularly in the second half. As a result, Bruce Arena’s side committed too many mistakes, lost the ball too many times and made it an uphill battle for themselves to mount serious attacks when moving the ball across the pitch.
- FC Dallas played a very organized style of play, defended superbly, kept their shape well and attacked with speed. All of these attributes combined was the difference why Dallas won and LA lost.
- LA Galaxy’s defending and marking was woeful. For Dallas’s first goal, the defenders gave him too much time and space. For the second goal, there was literally no marking near the back post. And for the third goal, LA was left flat-footed as Dallas remained onside and ran on to the ball to score.
- FC Dallas defended in numbers, getting 9 players behind the ball. Not only did Dallas defend well, but they also cut off many Galaxy attack by blocking shots and passes played near or in front of the penalty box. Galaxy instead tried to cross the ball into the box but Dallas had a comfortable time defending those balls all night.
- LA Galaxy ran out of ideas. In the first half, the team was far more creative. In the second half, they were unable to open apart the Dallas team. And after the third goal went in for Dallas, LA lost its killer instinct.
FC Dallas thoroughly deserved to win the match and become Western Conference champions. Congratulations to FC Dallas head coach Schellas Hyndman and his team of hard working players.