Playing their third match in a week the Fire were outclassed in Dallas surrendering the Brimstone Cup for the ninth consecutive season. A defensive lapse in the 20th minute from Kwame Watson-Siriboe resulting in the first goal was all Dallas really needed to earn the three points and continue the Fire's miserable season.
The second half saw very little fight from the Fire which could have been the result of tired legs and an FC Dallas goal in the first minute after halftime. The attack that looked so promising and effective in San Jose disappeared after a few glimpses in the first half. Of course it didn't help that Peter Lowry replaced John Thorrington in the starting eleven due to injury and didn't exactly make anyone forget Baggio Husidic.
GK Sean Johnson (5) - Allowed three goals but once again a Fire goalkeeper was left out to dry by porous defense. Guessed right on Cunningham's PK goal but couldn't get a hand on it.
D Steve Kinney (4) - Was beaten by Chavez on the ball leading to the second goal and then deflected the ball into the net while trying to defend the shot.
D Kwame Watson-Siriboe (4) - Misjudged the bounce from Dario Sala's free kick allowing Rodriguez to get behind him and bury the first FC Dallas goal. Watson-Siriboe enjoyed two good performances before this match but easy goals like this one have been the trademark of the Fire defense all season. Was subbed out for Conde in the 59th minute. I'm still wondering why you switch off a central defender for another central defender when you're trailing 2-0 with a half hour to play.
D Dasan Robinson (5) - Committed the foul on Cunningham which was judged a penalty kick by Alex Prus. Robinson got the ball first while attempting a slide tackle but Cunningham professionally drew the call by going down on contact. Had that been Calen Carr instead of Jeff Cunningham, Prus may not have found his whistle.
D Krzyzstof Krol (5) - Joined the attack a bit in the first half and was so-so defensively.
M Logan Pause (5) - Played the role that we're accustomed to. With the team on the brink of elimination (officially) and trailing by two, I probably would have opted to bring in Conde for Pause in the 60th minute in hopes of getting something going forward.
M Peter Lowry (4) - Distribution and vision were poor. Attempted to chip Sala in the 11th minute wasting a good opportunity. Subbed out in the 54th minute for Pappa.
M Patrick Nyarko (5) - Provided several dangerous balls in the first half but his first touch failed him in the 14th minute while attempting to get around the Dallas keeper for a shot. Subbed out for McBride in the 67th minute.
M Bratislav Ristic (5) - Provided a little action in the first half but his fouls outnumbered his offensive chances. Moved to central midfield briefly in the second half when Pappa entered the match but FC Dallas was in defend mode by then.
F Freddie Ljungberg (5) - The spark that was evident on Wednesday wasn't there tonight. After a fair first half he fizzled in the second and was rarely effective.
F Calen Carr (4) - Carr can stretch the field a bit with his pace but his decision making and play making ability is still not first eleven quality. He is more effective as a substitute and should be used so.
M Marco Pappa (4) - Entered the match in hope of injecting something into the attack in the 54th minute. Instead, the attack on the left side which showed some promise in the first half was non existent in the second.
D Wilman Conde (4) - Entered the match for Watson-Siriboe in the 59th minute and I'm not sure why. As an added bonus, Conde picked up a yellow card in the 84th minute which disqualifies him from the Fire's next match. From what I understand, Conde is waiting to see what changes are made before signing a contract for next season. If he waits too long, he could be one of them.
F Brian McBride (4) - Missed a wide open look at goal in the 85th minute. To be fair the ball did bounce up and catch his knee but most would expect that even Chad Barrett could have put that one away.
The Fire take on Columbus on Friday amid Thirteenth Anniversary celebration events. As hard to believe as it may sound the Fire have yet to be mathematically eliminated from the playoffs. If the Fire win all four remaining matches against the Crew, KC, DC and at Chivas and Colorado manages to lose all three of their games (at Dallas, at LA, and RSL) the two teams will be tied on 41 points.
Colorado shockingly lost to DC United at home this weekend.