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Know Your MLS Team: FC Dallas

 Posted by on May 19, 2013 at 12:56 pm  Blogs/Media
May 192013
int 130317 mls Houston Dallas HL 300x168 Know Your MLS Team: FC Dallas

Founded: 1996 (Was known as the Dallas Burn from 1996-2004)

Where They Finished Last Season: 9-13-12 (Did not make the playoffs)

Pedigree: MLS Cup Runners Up (2010,) 2006 Supporters Shield Champion, 1997 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup Champion

Rivals: Houston Dynamo (The El Capitan,) Chicago Fire (Brimstone Cup,) Colorado Rapids

Supporters: The Inferno,  Dallas Football Elite, Red Shamrock, and the Dallas Beer Guardians.

Coach: Schelles Hyndman

Top Returning Players: DEF George John, DEF Jair Benitez, MF David Ferreira, FWD Fabian Castillo, FWD Blas Perez

Key Additions: GK Raul Fernandez (Nice,) DEF Michel (Aris,) MF Je-Vaughn Watson (Houston Dynamo,) FWD Kenny Cooper (New York Red Bulls,) FWD Eric Hassli (Toronto FC)

Key Departures: GK Kevin Hartman (Semi-Retired,)MF Brek Shea (Stoke City,) DEF/MF Daniel Hernandez (Retired)

Young Player to Watch: DEF London Woodberry, FWD Fabian Castillo


If there is a team that represents what is truly good about Major League Soccer it is FC Dallas. A team that started out in a difficult environment in football crazy Texas, this is a club that has finally found its place in the Dallas market. They have taken their lumps, at times averaging 7,900 fans a game, and developed a strong fanbase and a team is respectable on the field. Although they did not make the playoffs last season, this is a team that has only missed out on the postseason five times in fifteen seasons.

The problem FC Dallas had last season and is critical for their continued success this season, is to remain healthy. During last seasons trials, the club lost key players like David Ferreira, Brek Shea, and George John for extended periods of time. While a club can always wish for good health, the only true way to ensure that a team is prepared for injuries is by adding depth. FC Dallas has this in spades. Other than the departure of Shea, the team lost very little in terms of output while adding proven MLS players like Cooper, Watson, and Hassli. Their newfound depth has proven to be valuable during crunch-time this season. They have scored 6 goals in the final fifteen minutes this season, which currently ranks them second in all of MLS.

Where the team last season was having difficulties fielding a competitive roster, they now have multiple players at every position and reserves that would start for most MLS teams. Perhaps the best example of this is at Goalkeeper. At one end of the pipes, you have Peruvian International Raul Fernandez, who is sporting a 1.11 Goals Against Average. While his performance has been impressive, FC Dallas also has a very capable backup in Chris Seitz. The MLS veteran currently has a GAA of .50. With two capable goalkeepers and a strong defense sporting the likes of Yasmil Benitez, John, and Homegrown Product London Woodberry, this is a team should not let in many goals. They are very physical, but they do have some difficulties with the counter-attack. During last night’s match with the Seattle Sounders, Sounders FWD Eddie Johnson was able to make short work of Woodberry. Coordination between the midfield and the defense will be critical as Woodberry develops.

Even if their opponents are able to score a goal on them, Dallas has the ability to score at will on their opponents. Currently the club ranks third in terms of team goals with 18 tallies. While FC Dallas is loaded with offensive weapons, the lightning rod of their attack is 2010 MLS MVP David Ferreira. The former Colombian international has scored 21 goals for the club in parts of 3 seasons. While he possesses a rocket of a left foot, it is his distribution and dribbling ability that makes him such a deadly force on the opponent’s defensive end. Unfortunately, he has been hampered by injuries for the past two seasons, so staying healthy for him, much like the rest of the team is critical. With prolific scorers like Kenny Cooper (67  goals in 6 MLS seasons,) Panamanian international Blas Perez (12 goals in 2012,) and role players like Fabian Castillo and Eric Hassli, this is a club that should be able to score goals with relative ease.

While FC Dallas may have had a down season last year, it is evident that by the club’s offseason additions that they are fully committed to winning now. With a strong set of forwards, and a defense composed of high ceiling youngsters and proven veterans, this is a club that can play with the likes of Los Angeles and Houston. As long as the club does not have the number of cataclysmic injuries that it suffered last year, it is safe to assume that FC Dallas will be a contender for the Supporter’s Shield and the MLS Cup.

Beer of Choice: Wild Hare Pale Ale, Shiner Bock Brewing Company

While I may consider myself a beer aficionado, I will admit that sometimes cost comes into play when I am considering what type of beer to purchase. While I was waiting in line the other week at my local liquor store, slowly losing my patience with the person buying 15 lottery tickets in front me, I noticed that the owner was selling Shiner Bock for $4.99. “What the hell,” I thought to myself. And with Shiner Bock being a Texas-based brewing company, I thought it would be the perfect companion to the night’s FC Dallas match.  So I returned the beer that I was originally interested in purchasing and exchanged it for this unknown discount brew.

The first impression that I had from this beer was the color: when you are pouring it into your glass you notice the nice amber glow that the beer gives off. Most IPA’s almost have a yellowish color to them, so Wild Hare has a bit of maltiness to it. But make no mistake: this certainly packs a punch at 5.50%ABV. It was a fantastic complement to the high-scoring attack that FC Dallas was showing against D.C. United. While the score only ended up being 2-1, they dominated United in all aspects of the game. Perhaps it is the price, or perhaps I was just enjoyed watching a quality team flex their muscles, but I could imagine sitting at the North End of FC Dallas Stadium with a Wild Hare in my hands rooting on FC Dallas.

Sean Maslin

Writer for Global Football Today and Blatter's Blotter. Lifetime D.C. United, Newcastle United, and Washington Warthog fan. Can be reached at @SeanMaslin on twitter or at

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