The big double header is finally here as FC Dallas fans will get to see plenty of action on Saturday afternoon against Bayern Munich’s U23 side and USL Championship side San Antonio FC.
These two matches are certainly the first big test of the preseason for FC Dallas as they’ve beaten a local amateur side and a college team so far this preseason. Here are a few things to look at tomorrow against these two sides.
That first team look
I think it is going to be safe to say that things will look a lot different under Luchi Gonzalez as compared to Oscar Pareja. So far we haven’t had a even a sniff of the old 4-2-3-1 look in terms of formation. While that may be what some of this group is suited for, Gonzalez appears to be making the big shift to a 4-3-3 with the three midfielders acting as their true #6, #8 and #10 selfs. A shift that I am very excited to see unfold further down the road against MLS competition.
Gonzalez has stated he wants to keep his team uncomfortable during the preseason and that each position is up for grabs. But even saying that we’re already seeing a good glimpse of what the actual first group should look like come March 2 against New England.
The defense hasn’t changed a whole lot with Matt Hedges and Reto Zeigler still holding down the middle of the group with Jesse Gonzalez in-between the pipes. The big question going into this weekend will be whether or not Reggie Cannon has regained his starting role over fellow Homegrown Bryan Reynolds, who has appeared in that role a lot this preseason.
While the defense feels familiar, the way the midfield will look should be very exciting to watch with Paxton Pomykal and Pablo Aranguiz getting their shot at things this year. We all pined for that to happen last summer when Aranguiz came on and just in general for Pomykal. Neither got their chance to show things last year but under Gonzalez, they should be given free rein to show their skills.
All about getting comfortable
While Gonzalez stated he wanted an uncomfortable group a couple weeks ago, right now it is all about getting that chemistry right. With two full 90 minute games, you want to see this first team gel as much as possible but also you want the new faces to find a way to get used to playing on the grass at Toyota Stadium.
I look at our big Czech striker Zdenek Ondrasek, who has appeared a lot with the second group this preseason. He’s a guy right now in my mind that needs time with just about everyone in the first group to get accustomed to how things go in MLS.
I think the same could be said Bressan, and the two SuperDraft picks Callum Montgomery and John Nelson.
While it felt like FC Dallas got rid of a lot of familiar faces, they really are only bringing in a small number of new guys to help push a team that nearly won the Western Conference last year.
Getting the most out of the younger guys
Two 90 minute games mean we should see plenty of faces out on the pitch tomorrow afternoon. While I am eager to see what the first group will truly look like together, I am equally excited to see what the second and even third group have in store against a USL Championship side.
We talked earlier in the week that guys like Edwin Cerrillo and Thomas Roberts have a lot to gain out of this month and this weekend could be huge for both of them. Roberts getting more face time in front of the Bayern Munich brass and Cerrillo getting more minutes to show that the club needs to pull the trigger on his HGP deal.
What are you hoping to see out of these two games on Saturday? Let us know below.