The six game winless streak is certainly going to be tough to end for FC Dallas this month as international call ups are making first-year manager Luchi Gonzalez do some overtime in sorting out who to play where.
The schedule will help out a tad bit in the weeks ahead with the Gold Cup break coming up.
Here is a list of everyone who has been called up for both FC Dallas and North Texas SC.
Brandon Servania, Edwin Cerillo, and Paxton Pomykal (US U-20s) - We already know about this one as these three have been out for a couple weeks already with the national team in Poland. There is one more group stage game tomorrow afternoon for these three against the group’s weakest team in Qatar. A win will almost certainly push them through to the Knockout Round, a draw might make things a little dicey depending on what happens with Nigeria and the Ukraine. If they win Group D, that puts them in a June 3 game, if they get second in the group that is a June 4 game against either France or Mali. If they end up third place, that likely still puts them in a June 3 or 4 game. A win there sees a June 7 or 8 game in the quarter-finals. If the US some how makes it to the title game, or even the third place game, that goes all the way until mid-June (the 15th for the title game).
When will we see them back? Best case for FCD might be a loss tomorrow and no Knockout Round (pretty unlikely as the top four third place teams move on and the US has three points already). More than likely, the first game back for these three won’t be until the June 22 game at home against Toronto.
Pablo Aranguiz (Chile U-23s at the Toulon Tournament) - We discussed this one yesterday. La Roja’s U-23 team will participate in Group A of the Maurice Revello tournament, held from June 1 to June 15, and will play matches against Portugal (June 1), Japan (June 4) and England (June 7).
When will we see him back? Just like the three above, slot him in for that June 22 game against Toronto.
Carlos Gruezo (Ecuador, Copa America) - FCD has already been without one of their best players for the last few weeks and it has shown. Now Gruezo joins Ecuador where they will play matches against the Venezuela (June 1) and Mexico (June 9) in preparation for the Copa América tournament, running from June 14 to July 7, where they will face off against Uruguay (June 16), Chile (June 21) and Japan (June 24) in the group stage.
When will we see him back? This one is certainly a longer runway for a return. Should they some how get through the group stage, that puts them in a Knockout Round game on June 27, 28, or 29 (all depends on their finish). Get through that and a semifinal game is on July 2 or 3 with the finals on July 7. I doubt Ecuador will make it that far but you really never know. Best case he returns for the June 30 game in Portland. I would imagine depending on his health we’ll see him first in the annual July 4 game against D.C. United.
Bryan Acosta (Honduras, Gold Cup) - Acosta earn a spot on the Honduran Gold Cup squad yesterday. Honduras will have international friendlies against Paraguay (June 5) and Brazil (June 9) before facing Jamaica (June 17), Curacao (June 21) and El Salvador (June 25) in Group C for the 2019 Gold Cup running from June 15 to July 7.
When will we see him back? This one feels similar to Gruezo as Honduras is not a favorite to win the Gold Cup. They should get out of their group however which could make his return date interesting. Getting out of Group C means a game on June 30 in Philadelphia. That puts his most likely first game back on July 4 but should Honduras make it to the semifinals, that pushes his return to July 13 in Minnesota.
Reggie Cannon (United States, Gold Cup) - Right now we’re all playing the waiting game for Reggie. He’s on the provisional roster but right now there is a solid chance that he won’t make the Gold Cup team.
Bicou Bissainthe and Ronaldo Damus (NTSC, Haiti, Gold Cup) - Two other players to mention here are North Texas SC’s Bissainthe and Damus for the Haitian national team at the Gold Cup. Both were named to the provisional. Nothing is set in stone yet for whether or not they’ve been named to the final team but if they do, NTSC would be without them for their busy June stretch that sees them on the road for three straight games.
Obviously, if you are going to lose six midfielders in one stretch, things are going to look pretty rough. Throw in the injuries to Santiago Mosquera, the long awaited return from injury for guys like Cristian Colman and Francis Atauhene and this makes things even crazier.
What it all means
Thankfully both Acosta and Gruezo will depart for their tournaments after this weekend’s game against Seattle. Still, that will put FCD at 20 available and healthy players for this weekend (I’ve excluded the two guys on loan in that count). And yes, that number includes three goalkeepers.
Some folks have asked if FCD would do a short-term loan of one of their USL guys. The answer for that is a little tougher to explain and one that is probably unlikely overall.
Here is what the rulebook says about those sorts of things:
USL Short-Term Agreements
A club may sign players from its USL affiliate to Short-Term Agreements (up to four-day contracts) for CONCACAF Champions League, Canadian Championship, Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, and exhibition matches. A club may sign a player to a maximum of four Short-Term Agreements each season (maximum of 16 days).
Players may also be signed to Short-Term Agreements for MLS League Season games but only in cases of Extreme Hardship.
Extreme Hardship Call-ups
Clubs may add players to their roster in cases of “Extreme Hardship.” Extreme Hardship exists when an MLS club has:
fewer than four available outfield substitutes (less than 14 outfield players available)
OR has fewer than two goalkeepers available.
USL Player Short-Term Agreements in cases of Extreme Hardship: A club may sign players from its USL affiliate (on loan) to Short-Term Agreements (up to four-day contracts) for MLS League Season games only in cases of Extreme Hardship.
A club may sign a player to a maximum of four Short-Term Agreements each season (maximum of 16 days). During such time, the player may play in any CONCACAF Champions League, Canadian Championship, Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, and exhibition matches.
So yeah, probably unlikely right now given the amount of healthy players.
One other option, which is also highly unlikely given where we’re at in the calendar is signing a free agent. Since FCD and MLS are outside of a transfer window, they can only sign someone that is a free agent. No transfers into the club can happen until later this summer.