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What we learned against the San Jose Earthquakes: Give me Jesse!

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Why doesn’t Jesse get the support that the rest of the homegrowns get?

MLS: FC Dallas at San Jose Earthquakes Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

FC Dallas lost a 4-3 in what turned out to be a shoot out against San Jose (just like we all expected). While our predictions were optimistic that the team in first place could grab three points against the worst team in MLS, things don’t always work out like that for FC Dallas. As for now Dallas are still on top of the standings but Sporting Kansas City is one point behind with a game in hand.

Let’s have a bloodbath

It’s easy to trash a keeper after he let in four goals. But the Jimmy Maurer didn’t have any business starting in the first place. He bailed us out plenty of times in the beginning of the season and he made some of the best saves I’ve ever seen in my life. These things are true. But they don’t mean that he should be FC Dallas’ starting keeper.

FC Dallas are fortunate enough to have a 23-year old homegrown keeper with 5 years of MLS experience. I don’t understand how the “playing the kids” mentality does not apply to Jesse Gonzalez. I cannot figure out why he is the subject of so much criticism instead of support. I don’t know what else FC Dallas fans want him to do. The same fans that defended Reggie Cannon when he had early season hiccups are the first in line to jump on Jesse. At the end of the day, Jesse is our boy, our beautiful homegrown, American boy.

He has an amazingly high ceiling, but he’s only 23. He is a mere adolescent in goalkeeper years. I’m sorry that your badass goalkeeper in FIFA is a stud when he’s 19, but that’s not how it works in real life. Goalkeeper is one of the hardest positions to play and it’s understandable that there will be mistakes along the way. I’m sick of the indecisiveness and it’s about time that Oscar just stuck with Jesse.

Gruezo is the glue

While Victor Ulloa may be the older of the two midfielders that Dallas normally starts, Carlos Gruezo is the one that makes it work. He’s like that glue that is invisible when it dries. When he’s starting he can be hard to notice unless he’s doing something wrong, but when he isn’t there everything falls apart.

He’s the piece Dallas should be most concerned about losing this off season. While I love Jacori Hayes’ energy, he hasn’t figured out how to hone it as effectively as Gruezo has. Jacori tries to be everywhere while Gruezo knows where to be. Gruezo did well covering for Kellyn when he was here, but now with Ulloa he’s taken a different role. Oscar tries to push him further up the field and you can tell he just isn’t comfortable with that (neither am I), except for how much he seems to like launching the occasional long shot. The Ulloa-Gruezo pairing splits up the attacking duties 60/40 Ulloa to Gruezo, but Gruezo is better suited for a system in which he is even less responsible for the attack.

Dallas doesn’t have any midfielders on the roster that allow Gruezo the freedom to focus on his defensive duties. While the addition of Abel Aguilar should offer some interesting possibilities on that front, I doubt he makes a long term contribution to FC Dallas. Maybe he’s just a test to see how Gruezo pairs with a more attacking midfield partner.

Ending on a high note

Santiago Mosquera is back baby!

I am very excited to have one of our only players capable of producing a play like this back. While the result might have you down, think about Mosquera, Pablo Aranguiz, Jesus Ferreira, Francis Atuahene, and Ema Twumasi in the attack next year.