FC Dallas starters got 45 minutes of action today as they tied NPSL side Chattanooga FC 1-1. Reserves also saw plenty of action in the first road trip of the preseason.
Matt Hedges scored a first half goal off a Mauro Diaz free kick to help secure the draw. Diaz had a strong first half that reminded FC Dallas fans of his 2016 campaign as he was dicing up the Chattanooga defense early and often in this one.
Six minutes in Diaz nearly got FC Dallas on the board with a quick restart off a set piece 25-yards from goal. Diaz found Michael Barrios inside the penalty box where he lopped a shot that forced the Chattanooga keeper into a save.
In the 32nd minute, Hedges got a slight touch off a Diaz set piece from 30 yards out to score the game’s first goal.
Chattanooga FC pulled a goal back just before halftime as Reggie Cannon got beat on the right side of the field by Jaquin Cabello. He then found the head of Zeca Ferraz to tie the game up.
The two sides traded chances in the second half as FC Dallas brought in more reserve players. Neither side were able to truly get anything on target. Cristian Colman and Tesho Akindele had a couple chances each but neither could find the back of the net.
FC Dallas will return home to face Salvadoran side Santa Tecla FC on Wednesday night at Toyota Stadium for the first big test of the preseason.
Notes from the friendly:
- FC Dallas starts four Homegrown players in second preseason match with several rookies getting a lot of action on the day as well.
- The back four of Anton Nedyalkov, Maynor Figueroa, Hedges and Cannon had their moments in the first half. Chemistry is going to play a large factor in how well this group does this season once Reto Ziegler is introduced into the starting group as well.
- Diaz looked in good form on Saturday. Not full season mode yet but he had no trouble picking apart the 4th division side.
- Colman and Akindele certainly have a lot of work to do. Finishes like the ones they had in the second half really make you hope Bryan Reynolds (out with U-18 national team duty) and Jesus Ferreira (still recovering from offseason surgery) can push these guys out in the depth charts.
- Paxton Pomykal starting over Roland Lamah isn’t anything worth reading into just yet. It is preseason after all folks. Take it all with a grain of salt. Still, it is exciting to see him get some important minutes with the first unit.