Big D Soccer Man of the Match: Jair Benitez

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

This is not a misprint.

Maybe we've figured out a better role for him.

For the second game in a row, Jair Benitez has been arguably FC Dallas' best attacking threat. Once again, throughout the game, Jair crept up forward to take on a midfielder role although he was listed as a starting Left Back.

To start, his pass on Tesho Akindele's goal.

Goodness, I've seen plenty of bending arial balls played into the six yard box, but rarely do we see one on the ground, and it was so much sweeter because it led to a goal.

Yes, upon review, Tesho was offsides, but that wasn't Jair's fault. Tesho's run was a bit early, but with the way the ball was breaking, I will argue that even if Tesho left a little later, he still would've gotten to the ball first with the way it curved around the LA Galaxy defender.

I went to bed last night not really knowing where I would take this article this morning. As much as I applauded JeVaughn Watson for being in the mix and having very good chances, he was sloppy, including I think four handballs and a couple of times offsides. I decided to give an overall look to the game and realized I saw a different Benitez out there.

Suddenly, this long-heraled hinderance has now become a bright spot out of nowhere in the last two games against the LA teams. Obviously we've taken note of his new-found passing ability, but I've also noticed something else.

Through the first nine games that Jair started this year, he had committed 10 fouls. Over his last two starts, he hasn't committed any. That isn't necessarily a major angle to take note of, but Benitez has a history of being an over-phyisical player and less fouling shows me that he's playing smarter, and I'm taking notice.

I would like to hope that Jair has found a better place for himself, and I think that when our defense can get healthy, mainly the return of Kellyn Acosta and George John, Jair has a chance to focus more on becoming a true midfield player that could pay dividends seeing that he could make a great CDM solely because he still has a defensive background with an apparent passing touch that is much better than Adam Moffat's sluggish ways.

I'm looking forward to seeing if Jair can keep his form over the next few weeks and if he can become a comeback player of sorts.

Who was your Man of the Match? What are your thoughts on my choice? Vote and comment below?

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