Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports
Two big selections, FC Dallas must get them right
But who should FC Dallas really select in tomorrow's draft? A forward? A defender (just to piss some of you off)? A midfielder? Who? I'll tell you who.
Okay, really there isn't a ton of mystery in this as I've written several times as to what I think FC Dallas will do in this draft. Yesterday I had a piece on FCDallas.com where I named five players that Dallas could be looking at, out of those five I strongly feel like one of them is a guy Dallas will be drafting.
It really comes down to playing it smart for these two picks and I see Dallas doing just that.
Down to two guys
My gut feeling in the first round comes down to two guys, both midfielders and both excellent players. Notre Dame's Dillion Powers and Maryland's John Stertzer. The good with both of these guys is that each have already signed with MLS, so right away you know there are plenty of clubs that are interested in them. Both are excellent leaders and have proven themselves well over the last four years.
Daniel likes Stertzer, I do as well. But let's not sleep on Powers either. I think a decision will have to be made between the two as I do see some shake ups in the top of the draft involving Toronto trading one of their picks. Once that happens, all bets are off for some of the clubs above Dallas. At the end however, I'd take Stertzer.
More than likely Dallas will have a chance at a Generation adidas player in this first round. But don't hedge your bet on them drafting one of them. Dallas doesn't need a project like Ketuka Manneh or even one with UNC's Mikey Lopez. Deshorn Brown would be a nice piece to have, as would Jason Johnson but neither really excite me enough to take a gamble on.
The only two they'd really take are Walker Zimmerman or Andrew Ferrell but I don't see Dallas trading up to get either one of them. Honestly, if they did, taking Ferrell would be a great deal as he could play center back, right back or even defensive midfield.
You'd still have to trade up to get them and that means getting rid of some allocation money to do so. Something I'd be against at this point.
I'll put it to you this way, in any other year Dallas would have already gotten two GA players in Kellyn Acosta and London Woodberry. I know that Woodberry is coming in as a senior but he would have been a GA in previous years for argument sake. Schellas Hyndman doesn't want younger players that need more time to develop, he wants proven guys that he knows he can rely on early in the season like a Stertzer or Powers.
Say an offer comes in that Hyndman and Fernando Clavijo cannot refuse. Something too good to be true like the Portland Timbers wanting to get back into the first round (which they do by the way). Dallas could get some allocation for that pick, somewhere in the $75k to $150k (just like they did back in 2010 when they traded the number seven pick to Philadelphia for that sum of money).
I don' think too many Dallas fans will be upset if the club trades away the pick for some good money that can be used elsewhere to sign say another forward (which is in the works), or even go after someone like Colorado's Jeff Larentowicz. It is all doable at this point.
Second round chances
Should Dallas keep all their picks the second round selection needs to be a good one. Given how there are likely going to be some changes in the first round with trades between other clubs, Dallas could just sit back and let it all fold out and hope someone like a Blake Smith form New Mexico falls into their lap.
For me, this second pick is about getting more midfield depth. The club needs help on the outside and a guy like Smith would bring it. So would someone like Louisville's Greg Cochrane, a defender that is sort of in the mold of a Carlos Rodriquez. He can play in the back on the wings or up in the midfield.
Versatility is key with any player and we know Hyndman loves a player that is just that.
Another guy that has the chance to fall to Dallas is Santa Clara midfielder/forward Erik Hurtado. He and Smith are viewed as the top wing midfielders in this draft and with some trades in the first round, anything could happen to where they could each slip.
Lastly, Dallas could still go defensive and snag a guy like Georgetown's Jimmy Nealis. He is a left back and possibly one of the better ones in this draft. Adding some depth behind Jair Benitez would be nice.
At the end of it all, if Smith or Hurtado are there, you take one of them. If not, go smart and go with a guy like Nealis.