We're less than two weeks away from the start of the 2014 MLS season so we're going to really try and ramp up our deep dive into each position on the depth chart. Today's discussion is the holding midfield...or defensive midfield. Whatever you want to call it, FC Dallas has plenty of shoes in this area.
For the longest time, FCD was searching for a big time holding midfielder to play in front of the defense, after the trade of Hendry Thomas, it appeared they found their man.
Who FCD has
Hendry Thomas - The Honduran knows what Oscar Pareja is going to ask of him and Pareja knows what to expect out of Thomas. I think that is key going forward here this season. Thomas is the big guy in the middle of the park that will do the dirty work in front of the defense. He has the experience and the aggressiveness that has lacked in the midfield over the last two seasons.
Adam Moffat - Another newcomer for FC Dallas this season. Moffat is another experienced midfielder that brings a ton of bite to the middle of the field. He is a no-nonsense kind of player and will be a great link between the defense and the attack.
Andrew Jacobson - AJ is one of the few guys that has been around for a while now. It seems like he's been here for ever now. We know what to expect out of him, he works hard on and off the ball and will make sure the team is together and on the same page. On the other side, we also know his shortcomings at this point. His love for the long-range shot that typically goes 20 feet wide and at times his sloppy passing.
Peter Luccin - Lost in all of the moves this winter was the re-signing of Luccin. If anything, that may have been more of a move to get him in line for a future coaching spot than a playing spot. The veteran midfielder has had plenty of injuries to deal with over the last few years but showed well in his final few games last year.
Bobby Warshaw - One thing we do know is that Warshaw is likely going back out on loan this season. Where to is the question but when he is here, he is likely the last guy listed on the depth chart for this area. Personally, I like the guy, I know some of you don't but he is a hard worker and players do respect him on the field.
Others to consider: Kellyn Acosta and Michel
Questions/Needs going forward
Health - If anything, the health of this group will fact in how FCD does this season, possible more than any other position on the field. Yes, I do believe that includes Mauro Diaz. In this league, defense does win championships and if the defense is healthy and the guys in front of them are healthy as well for the long haul, good things will happen.
Chemistry - The thing about this group early on will be how they come together. Which two start and which guys have to ride the pine to get minutes. I still feel that Moffat and Thomas are the best bet to start on day one but AJ could make a move as well. But the big thing is how well the two guys play together when they are out there.
How will Luccin factor in - I think before Moffat and Thomas arrived the weight of this group was squarely on Luccin's shoulders. But now where does he factor in? As a veteran backup? Will he still work hard to push the other guys (actually I think he will)? Will he be able to steal minutes away during the season?