via FC Dallas
SANDY, Utah – (Saturday, May 6) – FC Dallas (5-0-3, 18 points) remained the only unbeaten team in MLS with a 3-0 win over Real Salt Lake (2-6-2, 8 points) on Saturday night. Maxi Urruti recorded his second two-goal performance of the season and Jesse Gonzalez recorded his fourth shutout of 2017 in the win.
Things got started early in Utah as Maxi Urruti converted a penalty kick in the 3rd minute of the match. Tesho Akindele took a long feed from Walker Zimmerman to the touch line and tried to cross a ball back towards goal that went off the hand of Demar Phillips in the area. Urruti would notch his fifth of the season, beating Matt VanOekel in the top, right corner from the spot. It was FCD’s first PK attempt on the season.
Dallas would threaten again in the 13th minute as Roland Lamah chased down a long ball on the left side of the pitch and found Urruti at the right side of goal. The striker’s chance was blocked in front, but fell right to Akindele, who hit a trailing Michael Barrios at the top of the 18-yard box for a shot that was cleared off the line by RSL defender Aaron Maund.
Salt Lake would threaten late in the opening half with a couple looks at goal, the best of which came in the 43rd minute as Sebastian Saucedo curled towards the middle of the field from the right side outside the penalty area and fired a left-footed chance. Jesse Gonzalez was able to make his second save on the night, deflecting the high chance upwards before corralling his own rebound.
The home side had a chance to equalize in the 58th minute as Saucedo cut back to the middle from the right flank and found 19-year-old Brooks Lennon at the near-side post, but the forward’s volley attempt at doorstep went just over the bar.
Michael Barrios almost gave Dallas insurance in the 66th minute, running down an arcing pass from Urruti inside the 18 and firing a shot towards the far post. VanOekel got a fingertip on the ball to save a goal and earn Dallas a corner.
The FCD captain, Matt Hedges, would head home his first of the season on the ensuing set piece. Hedges pulled away from Justin Schmidt at the 6-yard box to connect on a corner from Homegrown Kellyn Acosta to put FC Dallas up 2-0 in the 67th minute.
Jesse Gonzalez was called into action several times over the final 15 minutes to hold his fourth clean sheet of the season. RSL had their best look at goal in the 78th minute as the Homegrown keeper would again deny Lennon. The forward received a distant free kick inside the 18 and ran toward the end line on the far side of the field before firing a quick shot that required a diving effort for his fifth save of the match.
In stoppage time, Urruti would put away his second of the night on the end of a Cristian Colman flick-on header into space behind a pressing Real Salt Lake back line. Urruti would run down the ball and attempted to chip VanOekel coming off his line to make the save. The Dallas striker would catch up to his own attempt going wide of goal before it rolled across the end line and tapped home a point-blank chance to seal the 3-0 win.