Being that we're at a bit of a break around the league, it is a great time to sit back and evaluate everything that we've seen out of FC Dallas thus far this season. After 16 games, we know where the team stands and how the players have played.
Transfer rumors are starting to make some noise around the web and we know some players are going to be targets more than others from this team. We're not going to hit on every player with this club because most of them will likely be in the middle of the pack. Instead, we'll key in on a few players that we know have had interest in the past and those that we think could get some in the near future.
So who has done enough this season to boost their value on the market? Who is holding firm with where they probably were at the beginning of the season? And who is trending down from where they started 2016 at?
Value Trending Up
Walker Zimmerman - We've by now seen the rumor that Liga MX side Club Atlas is interested in acquiring the third-year center back. And for good reason too. Since re-signing with the club at the start of the year, Zimmerman has started 13 out of the 16 games this season. He is leading the club in interceptions and has started to become the player that we all hoped he would be when he was drafted out of Furman in 2013.
Currently we know that Zimmerman is making in total compensation around $174k. If a club were to go out and offer anything over $500k for him right now, I would imagine Fernando Clavijo and company would take them up on it. He is at a price point that can be replaced in the transfer market this summer, even if it is from within by working on promoting Homegrown defender Aaron Guillen more into the mix.
Tesho Akindele - The Canadian forward is really starting to shine in 2016. Not only is he tied for the team lead in goals scored with five, he is also starting to show it on the international stage with Canada. Like with most strikers, when they score for both club and country on a consistent basis, their value begins to go up in a hurry.
The one thing going for Akindele's value is how cheap his current deal is with FC Dallas. He is the buy low type of scenario that some clubs would probably love to get ahold of here.
He doesn't currently have any rumors attached to his name but if he continues to score for his country and if he can somehow get to 10 goals this season, I wouldn't be shocked to see some interest pick up in a big way for January's transfer window.
Kellyn Acosta - No rumors here for him but the more we get out of this young player in the midfield, the more I believe the value will continue to rise. A lot of the value for me comes down to that performance he had a few weeks ago in New England. He came into the game as a sub due to an injury to Michael Barrios and immediately helped make an impact in the attacking side of things. That is where he wants to go moving forward.
The key for Acosta will continue to be getting national team minutes later this year. More importantly to that, getting national team minutes in the midfield instead of at right back. Acosta wants that to happen and more quality play with FCD will only help build that case.
Others in the mix: Chris Seitz, Ryan Hollingshead
Matt Hedges - Some could argue that his knee injury did more harm than good to his value but I'm a firm believer that he was starting to trend up regardless of that injury. Just look at the two results since his return, a shutout draw and a 1-1 draw.
Carlos Gruezo - I go back and forth on the young DP from Ecuador. Mainly I am waiting to see how well he does in Copa America. Should he and Ecuador get out of their group with him starting each match, then expect the interest to go up on him a good bit.
Michael Barrios - The winger is another wait-and-see player in my mind for various reasons. Some games he shines while in others he disappears. Plus his value likely took a bit of a hit with his knee injury.
Others in the mix: Victor Ulloa, Zach Loyd
Fabian Castillo - What can we say, the interest in Castillo at the start of the year compared to now seems to be drastically different. I've long thought that his play this spring was off for a number of reasons, one being that he was possibly overthinking things a bit too much with regards to making his national team roster for Copa America. Since he didn't make that team, I do think he has been a bit more relaxed and true to himself in games.
Mauro Diaz - As always, injuries are getting in the way of Diaz really being what he should be out there. He's still producing when he is on the field as he leads the team in assists.
Jesse Gonzalez - A lot of Gonzalez' value dipped for me as he lost his starting role a while back to Chris Seitz. But really a lot of it will come down to whether or not he plays with Mexico in this summer's Olympics down in Rio. If he plays, starts and excels, I have no doubt that his value will double from where it is today. Right now though, it is low merely because he hasn't won back his starting role that he began the season with.
Others in the mix: Alejandro Zendejas, Maximiliano Urruti