Two late stunning goals by two stunning players on the night grabbed FC Dallas three points over the top of the Eastern Conference, Montreal Impact.
Mauro Diaz scored directly from a free-kick with a knuckler to the top right corner in the 79th minute, and Maximilliano Urruti added another in the 87th off the volley for a 2-0 win.
Didier Drogba would make his 2016 debut in the 70th minute and created a chance with a header almost immediately, but he fouled Matt Hedges on the attempt. Drogba would be quiet for the rest of the night.
Dallas would keep Montreal on its heels for the majority of the first half, but the Texas club could never quite break through. Dallas spread Montreal wide, and strung passes together to get forward. Montreal was mostly up to the task however.
The first chance came at the six minute mark when Fabian Castillo found Urruti who then beat goalkeeper Evan Bush. Belgian international Laurent Ciman got on the goal-line in preparation for Urruti’s shot, and headed the attempt away off the line.
While Montreal seemed to be on the back-foot it had a great chance in the 38th minute when Harry Shipp kept the ball in play along the end-line. Shipp found Lucas Ontivero free inside the box, but Ontivero’s hard shot was saved by Jesse Gonzalez.
Ryan Hollingshead was very active in his first start of the year in his overlap play. The former UCLA Bruin was involved in two chances for FC Dallas, including a long-shot that skimmed just wide of the far post.
Dallas would have all the fun in the second half. Diaz’s free-kick goal came from just outside the box and into the top right corner. Bush did not even move on the attempt.
Urruti scored an arguably more impressive goal when Dallas got the ball in transition towards the Montreal net. Urruti chased the ball down in space and let loose a cracker on the bounce from outside the box while on the run. The ball nestled itself into the bottom right hand corner for 2-0.
The Impact would create two chances 61st and 89th minutes with Ontiverio, but the first went just wide of the right post, and Gonzalez was up the task of the second.