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Three Keys To The Game: FC Dallas

TORONTO - NOVEMBER 20:  Omar Cummings #14 of the Colorado Rapids dribbles the ball during practice in preparation for the MLS Cup against FC Dallas at BMO Field on November 20 2010 in Toronto Canada.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
TORONTO - NOVEMBER 20: Omar Cummings #14 of the Colorado Rapids dribbles the ball during practice in preparation for the MLS Cup against FC Dallas at BMO Field on November 20 2010 in Toronto Canada. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
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It's the big day, technically. Yeah, it's 4 AM but that technically counts. Regardless, there's no more games to talk about after this one so I'm pulling out all the (read: two) stops today for this one. Time for our final "Three Keys to the Game" of the season.

* Contain David Ferreira - Obviously when the key member of the opposing squad is the league MVP, he should be your first target. It will be a very interesting point of the game to watch Ferreira take on Pablo Mastroeni and Jeff Larentowicz, the brilliant defensive pairing in the midfield for Colorado. Since most of the offense on FC Dallas runs through Ferreira's foot, it's easy to predict that if you can contain Ferreira you can probably contain FC Dallas, at least to a much higher degree than you'd be able to if you weren't stopping him.

* Do What You Do - The way that FC Dallas dismantled the LA Galaxy in the way they did last Sunday involved getting the LA Galaxy to stop playing their game. All it took was a few great saves by Kevin Hartman and a goal on a breakaway by - who else - David Ferreira, to throw the Galaxy completely out of whack and into an angry, discombobulated shell of themselves. The other two goals were really just icing on the cake, because despite what the not-at-all bias ESPN commentary men were saying, this game was over after that first goal. Beckham's crosses were going wild, Donovan was too busy trying to draw fouls and complaining when he didn't to score, and Donovan Ricketts was his usual overrated self with no confidence. Even if the Rapids go down early, they've shown late this season that they can come back from adversity, as long as they keep with their simple yet effective game plan.

* Score First - Self explanatory, but the Rapids are almost unbeatable when they score first. In fact, it took an Anthony Wallace groin sprain in the second game between these two clubs this season to give FC Dallas the comeback after Colorado held a 1-0 lead for 20 minutes. If nothing else, scoring first with such a defensive group will be a boost to the clubs chances of forcing extra time.