FC Dallas (FCD) will face CF Monterrey Rayados in the finals of the U-19 Gordon Jago Super Group in the Dr. Pepper Dallas Cup tomorrow at 6:00 p.m. at Toyota Stadium in Frisco.
To get the finals, Dallas defeated two-time Super Group champion Coritiba 2-1. Coritiba is a club from Curitiba, Brazil…a city approximately 200 miles southwest of Sao Paulo. The two Dallas goals would give any fan of soccer in the United States, who believes our players lack technical ability, serious hope for the future. On the first goal in the 80th minute, Jesus Ferreira played a ball off his chest at the edge of the box, waited for an angle to open up while his right back overlapped, and calmly placed the ball just inside the far post past the diving goalkeeper. Coritiba leveled in the 87th minute on a nice free-kick after FCD gave a foul just outside the box. It only took a minute for FCD to regain the lead, however, as Jesus Ferreira and Paxton Pomykal connected for a beautiful game-winning goal. Ferreira played a perfectly timed pass into the box to Pomykal who flicked the ball past the sprawling keeper. To get into position to execute his exquisite finish, Pomykal made the type of run that is seen often in Latin America, but rarely in U.S. youth soccer.
Ferreira and Pomykal, along with defender Reggie Cannon, were three of it’s age appropriate Academy graduates who were sent back to bolster the FCD Academy side from the first team for this tournament
To advance to the semis, FCD beat Everton (England) 5-0, tied CF Monterrey Rayados and defeated Israel’s Maccabi Haifa FC 1-0.
Dallas Head Coach Oscar Pareja, in an article by Jon Arnold in the Dallas Morning News, talked about why he supported his players returning to youth competition.
“The participation of Paxton, Reggie and Jesus in the Dallas Cup is a great step for them. First, because that’s basically the team that they’ve been playing with,” Pareja said. “Second, because it’s a time for them to bring the experiences that they have had during the past three, four months with the first team and implement it into the action of competition. You now have a good scenario for them to come in and perform. It’s great for them and good for the team and the club.”