The past year has been memorable for FC Dallas fans, not just for what happened on the field but also for what happened off the field. Going into 2018, we knew this squad would be competing for hardware, putting a disastrous 2017 behind them, but did we have any clue FC Dallas would trade away rising star Kellyn Acosta and sell assist king Mauro Diaz? Or watch Oscar Pareja take his talents down to Club Tijuana? Who would have thought losing Cristian Colman to a season ending injury spelled potential doom to playoff hopes?
As we look back though at the Workhorse of the Week series, three players rise to the top across all performances.
Hedges was again the rock solid Captain of this team, despite enduring some difficult personal challenges. His defensive work rightly has earned him accolades and respect across the league. In a season when roster turnover and fresh signings could have threatened team cohesion, Matt probably did some of his best work behind the scenes. Despite a new coach and some new faces, FC Dallas goes into 2019 with a defensive core that should be able to pick up right where they left off. Hedges remains the heart of that setup.
During a tough game at Sporting Kansas City, Michael Barrios showed why he is a great fit for Major League Soccer. He is a pest with his speed and work rate, deadly enough in front of the net to strike fear into opponents (7 goals/2 assists). While 2018 wasn’t his best offensive year as he endured a decently long drought, Barrios became crucial with the departure of Mauro Diaz as an offensive kingpin for this team. Though some people might be open to seeing him depart, he has a role to play as long as he sticks around.
Reggie deserves to be a rookie of the year, even though he is technically disqualified after receiving a few professional minutes last year. The season started off with Cannon playing somewhat conservative, balancing his runs forward with a tendency to stay back to protect the back line. As the season progressed, he found more and more space going forward, combining with other players and still locking down opposing defenses. The kid didn’t miss many games and should continue to grow in confidence in 2019. He may be gone by the summer anyway to experience life in Europe.
Certainly, plenty of other players contributed and flashed workhorse quality, but looking back over the season and the Workhorse votes, Hedges, Barrios, and Cannon rise to the top.
Make your case for which of these three players deserve our Workhorse of the Year accolade in the comments section, and vote for your favorite below.
Cast your vote for the Workhorse of the Year.
This poll is closed