We started a new series earlier in the week that looks deeper at FC Dallas' depth chart. We're moving up the roster a bit as we focus today on the right backs.
Over the offseason FC Dallas re-signed a long-time starter in Zach Loyd, making the depth at this position a little stronger. Can he beat out Kellyn Acosta? Or will someone like London Woodberry make a play at some point this season for a start?
Who FCD has
Zach Loyd - By all accounts Loyd could be the starter once the season rolls around. He's made 102 starts in his four year career at FC Dallas. That kind of veteran leadership does go a long way in a defensive line too. Loyd brings plenty of good qualities to the table, even though most would agree that his 2013 was not a great season. The fact that he re-signed with the club in the offseason means he is happy here and wants to continue to contribute in any form that he can.
Kellyn Acosta - The young Homegrown really burst onto the scene last year thanks to an injury to Loyd. The 18-year old made 11 starts late in the season for FCD, showing that he certainly has what it takes to be a big time player for the club at the senior level.
London Woodberry - Some will say he is a center back but others will agree that he is likely more suited to play on the wings at the professional level. I'm in that camp that sees him more as an outside back than as a center back. Last year, Woodberry made three starts in the middle of the season thanks to some injuries in the back. While he didn't play particularly well in some of those games (remember that Seattle game?), he did show that he adds some nice depth to the defensive group.
Questions/Needs going forward
Where to play Acosta - Is he a RB? DM? RM? Time will certainly tell but I may be in the minority that sees him as a big time RB in Major League Soccer. He does well at getting forward when the club needs him to and he has the ability to fight for any ball, against any player.
Loans - I really hope we see Woodberry get some playing time from a loan this season. He is a prime candidate in my book to get out and play elsewhere in 2014. That is as long as Oscar Pareja is keen on keeping Acosta as a RB and not moving him further up the pitch. While losing a defender for a loan can be a risky move, I think it is one that needs to happen for Woodberry this season.
Can Loyd regain his form? - The real question in this spot may center around Loyd. Can he be the Loyd that we saw in his first couple of seasons here and not the Loyd of 2013? Can he stay healthy for the long haul too? Big questions to ask if he is going to be the starter again.