Jul 7, 2012; Frisco, TX, USA; FC Dallas midfielder David Ferreira (10) misses a header during the second half against the San Jose Earthquakes at FC Dallas Stadium. FC Dallas tie the Earthquakes 0-0. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-US PRESSWIRE
Some belated thoughts I've been kicking around in my head about the 0-0 draw and the homestand in general. I truly think Dallas will make a run and create a little bit of feeling that this team could sneak into the playoffs, but if things fall 3-5 points short, we'll look back at the week where Dallas allowed 1 goal against in 3 home games and only got three points out of it as the straw that broke the camel's back. Thought's on Saturday night:
Sputtering Attack The attack is obviously a huge problem right now. If Dallas could've mustered one goal in each of their home games, they'd be looking at a respectable 7 point haul from the 3 home games(which would've left them 3 points out of a playoff spot). The question becomes how much of these problems are man-made and how much of it is stuff you can't really help...
I think it's about 50-50. The gaffer should've probably recognized that Brek Shea as the lone forward wouldn't work after the first time he tried it, but went back to the well again on Saturday night to the same results. If Sealy isn't the answer, you'd have to think it would be more cohesive to even give Ruben Luna or Jon Top a run out rather than trying something that doesn't work. Wing play was a huge problem in the first half on Saturday and Brek out on the wing could've provided better results.
On the other side, you have to start Ferreira whether he's 100% healthy or not and Blas Perez would be irreplaceable on most teams. Schellas has to be disappointed with the effort that Fabian Castillo has showed while Andrew Wiedeman didn't really do enough in his big starting debut.
Strange Substitutions again Schellas said after the game he wasn't expecting a full game out of Ferreira and if that was the case then why not substitute Villar in for a clearly gassed David, move Brek to left mid and bring in another forward to play up top? You fix the wing possession problem while giving the center backs a different change of pace to deal with up top and keep your shape with Villar in the middle rather than out wide. Or even bring in Bryan Leyva in the last 10 minutes for Ferreira's spot. I've been told that Leyva is a risk, but it's not like FCD was keeping San Jose without chances in the last 10 minutes even as they were down to ten men. To not make an offensive substitution when you have the opportunity with your opponents down a man late in the game is a mistake to me.
Defense coming around As I wrote in my post-game piece, it's amazing what some consistency can do for a defense. With an unchanged backline for the third straight game, something that hasn't happened this season, Dallas shut out the best attack in the league even if it was by hook or crook. 1 goal allowed in 3 home games is fantastic and the defense has the ability to keep Dallas with a faint hope of the playoff race. As Drew mentioned before, you're looking at guys who are 22, 22, 23 and 24. This could be the cornerstone back four for years to come if Ugo Ihemelu can't recover from his concussion problems.
Team Youthfulness Going along with the last point, this team is getting very, very young. The average age of Saturday's 13 players was 25.6 compared with San Jose's 28.3...It could be working to a disadvantage for Dallas right now as they really need some proven vets in here, but the future is very bright, especially in defense.
Scattershooting...Alan Gordon is a handful isn't he?....FC Dallas has scored more than one goal in a game three times this season...Huge amount of noise coming from the FCD beer garden all night...One win will set this thing in motion, I'm very confident of that, but it's probably too late...Still only 7 points out of a playoff spot.