FC Dallas targets 2017/18 SCCL berth

FC Dallas (pictured) gathers for a team photo prior to a Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League game against visiting Real Esteli on August 4, 2016, in Frisco, Texas. (Photo: Mexsport)


FRISCO, Texas -- FC Dallas' success in three competitions this year has it thinking silverware.

The club owns the best record in Major League Soccer (15W-6D-8L, 51 points) and tops Group H in the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League (1-1-0, 4).

And, on Tuesday night, Dallas can book a spot in the 2017/18 SCCL by winning the Lamar Hunt/U.S. Open Cup against the visiting New England Revolution at Toyota Stadium.

"We had goals at the beginning of the year to hold up trophies," said midfielder Kellyn Acosta. "We have a great opportunity to do so. All of the guys are excited and motivated to go out there."

So is New England, which will try to qualify for the SCCL for the first time since the inaugural edition in 2008/09.

In slightly more than six months, due to its success, FCD has competed in 35 matches -- the most of any MLS side.

"This group has learned, especially this year, to move on from one competition to another one," FC Dallas head coach Oscar Pareja commented. "Many of our players have added another competition, going to the national team. There is (World Cup) qualifying, which is heavy and tough. Being in the (U.S. Open) cup, being in CONCACAF, being in the league and being in the qualification in the same month, the team has learned to do it."

Regardless how Dallas fares against New England, it has challenges ahead, including a bid to progress in the SCCL. FCD will face Guatemala’s Suchitepequez (1-0-0, 3) twice (September 28, home; October 22, away) to conclude group play.

"The team has done a great job so far facing three competitions during the year," finished Pareja. "We are very proud of them, but they need to finish the job. Despite all the competitions and games and the long journey that we have had so far, this is the time. We are confident. We will be able to be strong tomorrow."

On Saturday, Dallas – playing without internationals Maynor Figueroa (defender, Honduras) and Carlos Gruezo (midfielder, Ecuador) -- lost for the first time at home this year in MLS play (10-4-1), dropping a 1-0 decision to the Colorado Rapids.


NOTES: FC Dallas captured its only U.S. Open Cup title in 1997 – when known as the Dallas Burn – by outlasting D.C. United in the final, 5-3 on penalty kicks, after a 0-0 draw.