Just like with any season, there are injuries to deal with. FC Dallas is already dealing with the injury bug here this season with veteran guys like Dan Kennedy and Stephen Keel sitting out the opening month and a half of the season with various knocks.
So lets break down the guys that have been banged up to see where they stand for this weekend's game against Toronto FC.
Lately the club has had to contain the minutes of playmaker Mauro Diaz. The Argentine midfielder has seen limited training for the last three weeks but thankfully according to various reports, has trained more this week with the club.
One of the things FCD is doing this season with Diaz is controlling his time in training and in the games to avoid further injuries to his knees, hamstrings and anything else. Fernando Clavijo told the Dallas Morning News that bringing in Fabian Bazan as the club's fitness coach has helped navigate these waters.
One of the things we emphasized this year more than ever is not bringing people from injuries (back too soon). We're advised by Fabian, our fitness coach. We have to do different training for him. We're doing it and I'm glad. I'm glad to see him back there. We know how we play with him. We tried to bring him back when he wasn't 100 percent. I'm glad this year were not doing that and bringing him in when he's ready to go. - Fernando Clavijo via the DMN.
I'd say a lot will depend on Friday's training. If we hear that Diaz goes through that session with the team, you can expect to see him on Saturday.
Everyone was shocked to not see Hedges in the lineup last Friday against Colorado as he took a knock in training last Thursday. What happened according to Pareja following the Colorado game was that he took a ball to the face in training. Due to the concussion policies in MLS, they opted not to risk anything with the team captain and sit him out in last Friday's game.
Hedges returned to practice this week and I would imagine that means he is all clear in the concussion front. Expect him to be back in the lineup on Saturday.
The veteran keeper hasn't played a single minute this season, largely due to back spasms. The last couple weeks he has technically been the only guy on the FCD injury list that goes out (but we all know how iffy those lists can truly be).
The good news with Kennedy is that he has trained all week with the club for the first time in a few weeks. Does this mean he'll be in goal on Saturday night over Chris Seitz? I'm not exactly holding my breath for that big of a change just yet considering how tough back spasms can be on a player. But I do think he will be on the bench backing up Seitz.
According to the club, Keel had another procedure on foot, the same one that he had surgery on last December. The expected time frame for him is another two to four weeks. It should be noted that it wasn't a surgery that he had done, the DMN link above has some more in-depth explanations from Clavijo on what was done.
Keel was seen walking around fine on Tuesday in training though, and thankfully not in a walking boot either. Still, his recovery has been a slow one to say the least to begin the year. Hopefully by summer we're at least seeing him in a couple games with Arizona United SC as he works out his fitness.