Thomas McNamara scored a spectacular goal before crashing into the back of the net and New York City FC tied FC Dallas 1-1 on Sunday night.
David Villa earned a free kick in the 68th minute, sending his shot off the crossbar. With goal keeper Jesse Gonzalez falling to the ground after a leaping attempt to block the shot, the ball deflected straight down and bounced into the air. McNamara raced in at full speed and got his head on the ball as he leaped through the flailing legs of Gonzalez before landing in the back netting of the goal.
That was the only on-target shot for NYCFC (5-3-2) but it wasn't enough to keep Dallas (5-0-4) from remaining the only undefeated team. Nine games without a loss to open the season has Dallas closing in on the league record of 12, held by four teams, the last being Real Salt Lake in 2014. Dallas is unbeaten in 14 straight MLS games.
Tags: David Villa, FC Dallas, Tommy McNamara
Fans of FC Dallas, the last unbeaten team in MLS, have even more to cheer about.
Mauro Diaz, who scored 48 goals the past two seasons for Dallas, returned to the practice field this week.
While the Argentine striker won't play Sunday when Dallas (5-0-3) hosts New York City FC (5-3-1) at Toyota Park in Frisco, Texas, he is closer to his season debut after participating in during training this week.
Tags: FC Dallas
SNY.tv's Red Bulls writers Aaron Bauer and Brendan Joseph discuss why last year's two best regular season teams are in different places in 2016.
Aaron Bauer: So the Red Bulls play FC Dallas this Friday. This is a funny game because of how similar these teams were in 2015. They were both at the top of the league at the end of last year's regular season, tied on points, and showed a commitment to playing young players from their respective academies. They were both expected to compete for MLS Cup regularly for the next few years. Now, only Dallas has held up its end of the bargain, and the Red Bulls are trying to get on solid footing this year. What the heck happened?
Brendan Joseph: First, as must be stated with everything related to the Red Bulls right now, they were and continue to be devastated by injuries. Losing Gideon Baah and Gonzalo Veron, two players who were acquired with relatively large transfer fees and were expected to be starters, created gaps in the squad. The team trained for most of the preseason expecting to make the jump from the 4-2-3-1 to the 4-2-2-2 using Veron as a striker and Baah as a center back. Combine the injury issues and early-season rust with opposing teams parking the bus, and they are a team with two wins in eight matches.