Happy Labor Day everyone!
Last week, Thiago Santos dominated voting for his impressive performance against Minnesota United FC at home. The newcomer is rising up quickly and impressing us fans as he locks down his midfield spot.
Kansas City Isn’t So Scary
If there is one thing you know about playing against Sporting Kansas City, they are competitors. Coach Peter Vermes is the kind of coach who is clear about the type of players he wants on the pitch and the work rate he expects from them. FC Dallas got off the plane knowing that a result was going to require a similar kind of hard work, despite SKC missing a few key players due to injury and suspension.
And ultimately, they got the job done. Was it pretty? Was it the glorious possession-based soccer the team desires to play? No. There are so many things to address in this team, but this match, even a year ago, would have gone another direction.
- Congrats to Franco Jara getting his first MLS goal. Sure, it wasn’t a beautiful build up, just another submission to When Playing It Out of the Back Goes Wrong, but it was the kind of finishing we have missed before from other... strikers.
- Losing three players to injury under pre-COVID-19 rules would have likely doomed FC Dallas’ result on the road. Most teams would struggle in the scenario, but for a team that is still getting to full fitness, a lack of fresh legs could have made the final 20 minutes even more nerve-wracking.
- The midfield wasn’t at their best. I think Servania was playing a solid game, but an early yellow card meant he had to pull his foot off the gas a bit. Santos can’t be in multiple places at once. Injuries really damaged FCD’s game plan. SKC also had great games from their youngsters, making life in the midfield tough for Dallas.
- The defense is gaining steam. FC Dallas is not giving up a lot of goals just yet. Are they bound for a bad game coming up? Probably. But overall, you got to like how the back line is playing, how well John Nelson is stepping up, and the grit the boys have on display. Bressan took a couple for the team, and it helped preserve a precious point.
Take all those elements into account, you feel pretty good about FC Dallas only allowing one goal and carving out a point on the road. This game could have gone multiple ways, but FC Dallas played just well enough to secure something. These away points also are beginning to dampen some of the lost points at home a few weeks back.
I know Coach Vermes is a competitor, but it’s embarrassing to watch him on the sidelines with his non-stop complaining and whining about every little ref decision. I mean, every little stinking ref decision appeared to be worthy of his opinion. Like, at some point as a professional coach, arguing about balls going out of bounds just seems pathetic. Don’t you have bigger issues to think about? I get it - this game can be about little decisions, little moments, but Vermes earned his yellow card and continues to be one of the more annoying, whiny coaches to watch in this league.
If you recall, I am only nominating guys who go the full 90, and this week we have some good choices. John Nelson put on a glorious shift, getting the nod by many as Man of the Match. He continues to rise. But you can also give love to Ryan Hollingshead, Reto Ziegler, and Thiago Santos for their hard work. You might also want to consider Michael Barrios and Franco Jara for a full 90 shift. Jara, in particular, is key to this away point, and though he looked worn down near the end, he kept battling.
Cast your vote for the Workhorse of the Week.
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