Pre-Match Notes – Toronto FC vs. FC Dallas

Defensive consistency; it's right there. Fran sees it too. Won't someone please attend to it. - USA TODAY Sports

An extension to Know Your Enemy, featuring lineup and referee notes, links and videos heading into the match between TFC and FC Dallas

Line-up Concerns

Left-back Jair Benitez may be unavailable – listed as Questionable on Friday’s injury report with a left hamstring strain. His absence would probably force Michel to return to left-back with either Je-Vaughan Watson, formerly of Houston, or Bobby Warshaw into that central midfield role along side Andrew Jacobson.

Jonathan Top is also listed as Questionable (right hip flexor stain), while Ugo Ihemelu (concussion), Peter Luccin (torn right ACL), draft pick Walker Zimmerman (groin), Stephen Keel (left quad stain) and Ramon Nunez (ACL) are all Out.

It is looking likely that Blas Perez is in line for the start over Kenny Cooper as the centre-forward, as Schellas Hyndman stated to MLSsoccer.com - "Right now, Blas is our leading scorer from last year, he’s in great form, he’s playing with Panama at the international level, so I don’t think it does a lot for him to be coming off the bench."

Terry Dunfield is out, Danny Califf is a touch under the weather – stomach virus (flu) – having missed training the last couple of days, which could see Gale Agbossoumonde make his league debut for the club.

Referee

Ismail Elfath will take charge of the match, according to TFCpics.com’s referee stats, he has handled one match involving TFC previously – last season’s 2-1 win over Colorado.

He awarded a penalty kick to the Reds when Luis Silva was bundled over by Matt Pickens. Ryan Johnson failed to convert but made amends in the second half drawing his side level after Conor Casey’s header had put the Rapids in front. Andrew Wiedeman scored the game-winner with the greatest strike in modern history.

Elfath’s MLS Career Statistics: 10 games; Fouls Called/Game: 23.9; Yellows/Game: 2.2; Reds: 4; Penalties: 6.

Videos

FCD TV's Match Preview

TFC TV's Interview with Ryan Nelsen



TFC TV's Opposition Preview with Luke Wileman and Asif Hossain



FC Dallas’ Communications Department has been busy adding some frivolity to the serious soccer business. Their 'Crush the Orange' teaser proved popular prior to their derby against Houston and their YouTube channel contains a host of gems, such as ‘This or That’ and ‘Name that Tune’.

Links

Hassli Nearing Ideal Playing Weight – 3rdDegree at Dallas Morning News

Hyndman on Facing Old Friends – 3rdDegree at Dallas Morning News

Nelsen to Stay the Course - John Molinaro at Sportsnet.ca.

The Matchup – Courtesy of The Yorkies

Not Getting Any Easier – Michael Crampton at Canadian Soccer News

Countdown – Ian Clarke at Red Nation Online

And finally, here’s FC Dallas’ version of Know Your Enemy, put together by Drew Epperley of VWHooligan.com.

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