Djorkaeff ruins Pizza Hut opener with comeback draw
August 6, 2005

Dallas MetroStars
Ruiz 2 Djorkaeff 2
08.06.05 · League

The Metros looked dead at the break, but Youri Djorkaeff scored two early in the second half to pull out a tie in Dallas, 2:2. The first game ever at the new Pizza Hut Park was also marked by Amado Guevara's miraculous return to the lineup less than three weeks after his surgery. The game was evenly played, with both teams unable to convert late chances to leave with the win.

Guevara's return allowed Djorkaeff to move back up front; Sergio Galvan, who scored in the last two matches, started on the bench. After sitting most of the Open Cup match, Jeff Agoos and Ante Razov came back to the starting lineup. One change from midweek that stayed in place was Seth Stammler in the central of the defense, as Jeff Parke has not recovered yet from his injury.

The Metros were the best team early on, and had a excellent chance to score in the 18th minute, as Mark Lisi's shot hit the post. With Dallas goalie Jeff Cassar leaving his feet, Eddie Gaven had a completely empty net to shoot at, but his diving header was wide. And then, the game changed, and how.

Dallas' Carlos Ruiz scored two goals off Ronnie O'Brien feeds three minutes apart, in the 31st and 34th. Stammler was completely abused on the first, as Ruiz took him to school and scored with his head. On the second, it seemed the entire Metro defense fell asleep and let the diving Guatemalan walk through them to redirect the pass past Tony Meola.

And then the game changed, and how, again. Galvan Rey came in on the break for Mark Lisi, and once again, the offense looked alive. We bash Sergio a lot on this website, and deservingly so, but he is a different player this year. And just two minutes into the half, he was vital on Djorkaeff's first goal. Youri passed it to Galvan Rey, whose shot was saved by Cassar and rebounded to the goalie's right; thankfully, Djorkaeff continued his run and knocked it into the empty net to slice the lead in half. And four minutes later, it was a Galvan Rey feed that Gaven had saved off the line by a Dallas defender.

Then, in the 53rd minute, an incredible exchange followed. First, Michael Bradley saved one off the line himself when a goal looked certain; the Metros took the play the other way and Djorkaeff hit a perfectly placed soft shot from outside the box that rebounded off the goalpost and into the net to tie the game.

The Metros had to re-shuffle the defense when Carlos Mendes pulled out with an injury in the 65th; Danilo da Silva came in and moved to the right, with Chris Leitch shifting to the left and Agoos moving to the middle. And it was Agoos who was almost the culprit late in the game as Ruiz had two chances to complete his hat-trick; but Meola came up with a huge save on the first, and the second one went just inches wide. As for the Metros, Mike Magee came off the bench for Gaven and played very well; his one-time volley that went over the bar was probably the Metros' best chance, if you dismiss the two chances missed by Galvan Rey, who cannot help but revert to his former self on occasions.

With DC up three points on Metro, next Wednesday's match at the Scum looms huge.

Lineup: Meola, Agoos, Stammler, Mendes, Leitch, Bradley, Lisi, Gaven, Guevara, Djorkaeff, Razov. Subs: Galvan Rey, Magee, da Silva.

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