Dallas Soccer DFW

FC Dallas wins 1st game in Brazil

Published 3/5/2007 12:46:19 AM by FC Dallas from FCDallas.net

CURITIBA, Brazil - FC Dallas earned a 2-1 preseason victory over Brazilian side J. Malucelli Futebol S/A on Thursday afternoon in Curitiba, Brazil. Bobby Rhine followed up a rebound for the first goal and Kenny Cooper put in his own rebound off a penalty kick for the game-winner in the second half. FC Dallas will play Club Atletico Paranaense's B Team on Friday at the CAP Training Center, where the team is currently undergoing preseason training. A last-minute change in the schedule had FCD playing Malucelli instead of the previously scheduled Joinville Esporte Clube, both of the Brazilian Serie C.

"A lot of things I was very pleased with," said head coach Steve Morrow. "I thought at times we moved the ball very well but also a typical a first game. Our focus is mainly on fitness right now and getting the boys used to the style of play, working together as a team and really doing on the field what I'm looking for. For the most part we did it well and I still think there's a lot of room for improvement."

Dallas started with a formation that had four defenders and a combination of six players in front. Chris Gbandi and Aaron Pitchkolan controlled the center of the back, with Michael Dello-Russo on the right and David Wagenfuhr covering the left. Linking the defense to the offence were newly-signed midfielder Juan Carlos Toja and Argentine trialist Pablo Richetti, while Rhine, Dominic Oduro, Roberto Mina and Abe Thomspon combined to cover the forward flanks and center of the offense.

"This is what preseason is all about as well," added Morrow. "Looking at guys at different positions. It's a mixture of fitting guys in and getting them fitness and game time, but also for me and for the coaches to have a look at players in different positions. One or two things we tried worked out well for us and certainly gave us something to think about."

FCD got on the board after only three minutes after Thompson won a free kick outside the area on the left side. Roberto Mina hit the direct kick, forcing the 'keeper to dive to his left. While the 'keeper made the initial save, the ball bounced away and Rhine was there to knock it home.

Both Richetti and Rhine were shown cautions during the first half, which had its share of physical play from both sides. Malucelli took advantage of a restart right before the half to even out the game. A quick restart near midfielder sent a player down the right side into the penalty box. He took the ball to the endline and sent a cross back out to the center of the area where forward Jeferson was able to head to the far net.

FCD began making changes 10 minutes into the second half and eventually everyone but Carlos Ruiz, Richard Mulrooney and Dario Sala saw action.

Cooper, who had come in at the 60-minute mark, worked his way into the box two minutes later and was taken down for a penalty kick. He stepped up to shoot, ripping a hard shot that bounced off the keeper but straight back at Cooper who redirected the ball in to break the tie.

While holding on to the lead, FCD lost two players due to injury and one to a red card. Marcelo Saragosa and Dax McCarty both suffered sprained left ankles and had to leave the game. Arturo Alvarez received a questionable red card for what appeared to be dissent. The referee first gave him a yellow and immediately followed it with a red.

FCD - Rhine 3'
MAL - Jeferson 45'
FCD - Cooper 62'

FC DALLAS: Ray Burse, David Wagenfuhr (Blake Wagner 80), Chris Gbandi (Clarence Goodson 75), Aaron Pitchkolan (Drew Moor 80), Michael Dello-Russo (Alex Yi 80), Juan Carlos Toja (Anthony Wallace 55), Pablo Richetti (Marcelo Saragosa 70, Dax McCarty 80), Bobby Rhine (Sandy Gbandi 55), Roberto Mina (Scott Jones 55), Dominic Oduro (Tommy Krizanovic 60), Abe Thompson (Kenny Cooper 60, Arturo Alvarez 80).

MALUCELLI: Hebert (Roberson 46); Murilo, Leonardo, Titi, Referson, Fabinho, Evandro (Paulino 46), João Paulo (Orlei 46), Jeferson (Valdenir 46), Altair (Oliveira 46), Cafezinho (Marquinhos 46).

FCD - Richetti (Yellow) 20'
FCD - Rhine (Yellow) 30'
FCD - Alvarez (Yellow- Red) 83'

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