Wednesday, April 2, 2008

FC Dallas vs. Chivas USA game pictures

This weekend was one made for waterfall photography. It was nice and cloudy on Saturday, with some light rain falling. Instead of rushing out to the woods, however, I went down to Dallas for the season opener of FC Dallas. I was looking forward to it since (I’m ashamed to admit) I hadn’t been out of the state this year and Dallas is a fun town to visit. Even if we don’t really get to see much of the city in the short time we’re down there, it’s a nice change of pace.

We got in to town on Saturday afternoon, making a traditional stop at an awesome grocery store that features the best beer selection around. I stocked up on some Carlsberg, a beer I haven’t been able to find anywhere else. Then we went and checked into our hotel, and then went to find a place to watch some of the other MLS games going on that day...

The game was played on Sunday, and it was warm and muggy at the stadium. It was cloudy, but the sun broke through so I ended up getting sunburned that day.

Before the game there was the "FC Dallas Experience," a place for people to mingle before the game and get free stuff. They also had face painting, a live band and a place to make your own sign or banner. While I didn’t get my facepainted, we got some free streamers - which I promptly managed to forget about and leave outside the stadium. But we did manage to bump into Michael Hitchcock, the GM of FC Dallas. I should have asked him for a job there when I had the chance....

One thing the team is doing now is opening up the concert stage at the stadium as a beer garden. It wasn’t much there, really, a booth selling beer and some tables set up. But the benefit was that the door the players walk out is down there, so we went up and stood waiting for them to walk out.
Duilio Davino

I felt like a paparrazi standing out there. We also booed some of the Chivas players when they came out, and they gave us a few dirty looks (which I feel bad about, since I have a Chivas player on my MLS Fantasy team)...

And the start of the game:
Pizza Hut Park

We started out sitting at one of the plaza areas at the top of the stadium. It was shady there, but didn’t really provide close-up views of the game.
FC Dallas

Free Kick

I ended up heading down to the stands under the plaza, getting onto the first row. I was set up right next to the spot where they take corner kicks, thinking it would be a great spot to get some shots from. Of course they never took a corner kick from there while I was sitting there. And of the two goals scored during the game, both were on the other side of the field. The first goal was scored by Juan Toja by Dallas, here is the crowd celebrating:

I was close to the action on the field. Since Dallas’ goal was on this end of the field, most of the time I saw Chivas players trying to attack and Dallas trying to defend...



In the second half...


I got a laugh from the people sitting behind me. One of them had apparently never watched a soccer game before, so he was confused by the time. "I just noticed that the clock is going up, not ticking down?" He asked, "how much time is left?"

Soccer is a hard sport to take pictures of. Or I’m just used to taking pictures of waterfalls and rocks and nature stuff - you know stuff that doesn’t move around all that much. I really need a better lens, maybe something like what this guy was using. I’m sure it’s out of my price range though:
Camera Envy

Abe Thompson


Blake Wagner

Cooper trying to score


In the 84th minute, Chivas ended up scoring and tied the game 1-1. With just a few seconds left in the game, Dallas nearly pulled out a win with a shot by Andre Rocha. But it went above the crossbar, and the game ended as a draw.
So close

It looks like we’re going to head back there in a few weeks for another game, this time against New York. This game will be at night, which makes it a bit harder to get pictures. I might try to actually watch the game, instead of watching it through the camera’s viewfinder...

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