More fans like these....coming soon? - Cooper Neill
FC Dallas making major improvements....all over!
FC Dallas Front Office
NEW SIGNINGS! Last Monday was a great day for FC Dallas. The team brought in Eric Hassli and Kenny Cooper to bring a lot of goals (hopefully) to FC Dallas Stadium. Speak of the devil, the Expansion of the Beer Garden is underway. This is going to be great for FC Dallas Stadium (almost said PHP) for one simple reason: our stadium (it pains me to say this) lacks atmosphere. I can only recall one or two games where the whole stadium was engaged in cheering on the lads at home.
When the Beer Garden doubles in size, the supporter groups increase and the soccer chants we are accustomed to hearing in stadiums all over the world will be more audible at FC Dallas Stadium. Increased noise and fans in Frisco will help FC Dallas win more games at home by creating a home-field advantage and raucous crowds (hopefully). Think about it, the only reason teams hate playing here is the heat during the summer. Otherwise, teams do not fear traveling down to Dallas for games. I have hope that the expansion will help and the FO deserves a lot of credit for this great idea and a good week. One last point about the front office, they handled the Brek Shea situation effectively, in my opinion.
It has been a hot start to the preseason for the most recent FC Dallas HG signing. Playing in his first game in an FC Dallas jersey, (academy jerseys don't count!) Bradlee scored the first goal of the preseason for the Hoops against the University of Memphis. Having missed out on the score sheet in the first friendly in Cancun, Baladez responded against Atlante reserves with a brace, capitalizing on two mistakes from the Atlante Reserves back line and making no mistake (see what I did there?). Baladez is playing well in the preseason so far and while he may not get much first team time this year, he is flashing potential that makes me excited about the state of this attacking core for the future.
A mystery trialist at the beginning of the season, every die-hard FC Dallas fan should know about Michel by now. The Brazilian LB has been nothing short of impressive during the preseason and has shown enough to push Jair Benitez for the starting spot on the back line. From what I have read, Michel delivers great balls into the box, as evidenced by his two assists against the University of Memphis. If he continues to impress, he will make this team (since we need some depth for the wing backs). Even if he does not start, he will be a great bench addition. I am excited that someone will be pushing Benitez. This should be interesting to watch.
Chris Seitz- Started every game we were provided the lineup to so far this preseason.
David Ferreira- Two more big men signed up top will see David return to MVP form IF he stays healthy.
Fernando Clavijo- Bolstered the forwards on the team, but the wings remain an issue.
Eric Hassli and Kenny Cooper (Woohooo!) are the newest members of the team! I am very excited because a weakness of depth (the most overused word in FC Dallas blogs statewide) in the attack has now turned into a strength. Who loses the most from these additions? Blas Perez does. It is a given (if Schellas switches to the diamond 4-4-2) that Hassli and Cooper will be the starters because Blas is suspended. Perez will be missing Gold Cup time over the summer as well. You got to think that Schellas will ride the hot hand (or foot?) and if Coop and Eric start off the season strong, Blas will have to work hard to come back and earn his starting spot in the lineup.
I saw a tweet the other day (from Daniel I believe) that Luccin picked up a foot injury and the extent of the injury is still unknown. If Luccin is not healthy by opening day, this is an issue. He was supposed to push Jacobson for a spot in the center of the pitch and if he is out for an extended period of time, I see him struggling to break in to the team. The task of making the 18 man squad becomes even more daunting if Warshaw has a good preseason and starts pushing Jacobson himself. This should be interesting to watch.
Food For Thought
1. Do you think the Beer Garden expansion will help with home-field advantage?
2. Do you believe Baladez has a chance to overtake Jon Top on the depth chart or is it too early?
3. Do you want to see Benitez or Michel starting at LB?
4. Do you think I am being too harsh on Blas or Luccin?
I am always open to thoughtful, healthy debate if you disagree with me. There is a comments section for a reason, so answer my questions and let's talk! I am not afraid to admit defeat and a change in opinion if you prove me wrong, so you have nothing to lose. :)