MLS Regular Season
FRISCO – No team was worse in the Western Conference last year than Chivas USA.
The Goats finished with 30 points and just seven wins, for a measly .88 points per game.
Those numbers are just one of the reasons FC Dallas’ play against Chivas USA in 2012 was disappointing to head coach Schellas Hyndman.
FCD never beat the Goats last season, instead drawing all three matches.
None was more frustrating to Hyndman than the season finale of 2012.
“There was no way for us to get in the playoffs, but we wanted to finish on a high,” Hyndman said.
FC Dallas wound up blowing a 2-0 lead in the final minutes of the match at FC Dallas Stadium to draw Chivas USA, 2-2. FCD conceded goals in the 90th and 94th minute.
“I think that kind of spoke volumes about where we were last year,” Hyndman said, adding that the match was just one of several where FCD failed to maintain leads late in games.
The opposite happened against Colorado last Saturday, when FCD was able to hold onto a 1-0 lead for the win despite a frenetic final 10 minutes from the Rapids.
It’s a difference Hyndman hopes to build on in the early weeks of the 2013 regular season.
“Things kind of worked out for us,” Hyndman said of the season opening win. “I think we got a lot out of that game.”
FRISCO – Kyle Zobeck’s phone has finally stopped ringing.
The rookie’s phone was in use all day Tuesday and Wednesday after FC Dallas officially announced his signing.
“All of my former teammates got in contact with me,” Zobeck said, who played goalkeeper at Valparaiso University. “My family, former coaches. The support came from every direction.”
Zobeck’s signing is notable for several reasons.
He was drafted in the second round of the 2013 Supplemental Draft, bucking the odds by earning a contact with the club.
He’s also the fourth goalkeeper on FC Dallas’ roster – joining Raul Fernandez, Chris Seitz and Richard Sanchez – a situation head coach Schellas Hyndman admits is extremely uncommon.
“Let’s say Raul is our No. 1. He’s gone for the [World Cup] qualification games. That puts Chris at No. 2. Who is No. 3? Richard? He’s going to be gone a lot too,” Hyndman said.
Hyndman said FCD was impressed by Zobeck when he worked out for the coaches prior to this year’s SuperDraft and FCD wound up picking him based on those training sessions.
Zobeck continued to impress during the early weeks of preseason and when FCD was in Cancun. It was there Hyndman decided he wanted to sign Zobeck.
"The more and more pressure we put on him the more he did well,” Hyndman said. “We knew we had to pick up another keeper and we thought Kyle could do good enough and continue to develop for us to be that player."
FRISCO – Raul Fernandez did fine in his MLS debut according to head coach Schellas Hyndman, but there’s room for improvement.
The Peruvian national got the nod over Chris Seitz in Saturday’s 1-0 win over Colorado.
“I thought he had a good first game,” Hyndman said. “He gets a little bit nervous at times.”
The Rapids had 13 attempts on goal, with three shots on target.
The most frantic part of the match for Fernandez and the FC Dallas defense was the final ten minutes as Colorado was on the attack looking for an equalizer.
Hyndman said coaches will continue to work on decision making with Fernandez, improving his English-language skills and get as much work in as possible with the defense.
“He didn’t get a chance to play a lot in France, didn’t get a lot of games. That’s just rustiness,” Hyndman said. “We train him with a lot of numbers around so he has a back four to play in front of.”
Hyndman liked what Fernandez did in some 1-on-1 situations and liked the confidence the ‘keeper showed when he had traffic in front of him.
The coach acknowledged Fernandez had big shoes to fill with the departure of Kevin Hartman over the off-season, but said it’s tough to beat the bottom line result from Saturday.
“How can you fault a guy who got you a shutout?” Hyndman said.
FRISCO – The tape always tells the truth.
That’s what head coach Schellas Hyndman said at the beginning of a discussion about Saturday night’s 1-0 win over Colorado with reporters after Monday training.
Hyndman was specifically discussing the play of midfielder Je-Vaughn Watson, the surprise pick to start in the midfield with Andrew Jacobson. Bobby Warshaw and Jacobson had paired up in the final two preseason matches.
Hyndman said after looking at the game tape that Watson began Saturday’s match “a little inconsistent” but as the game went on he started to win more balls and was more effective.
Hyndman said he chose Watson over Warshaw because of experience. Watson had 24 MLS starts before Saturday’s match compared to Warshaw’s six. Hyndman also likes Watson’s international experience with the Jamaican National Team.
“The other thing that I thought was I needed more athleticism there and more quickness since [Colorado] would have three [midfielders] in the center,” Hyndman said.
Warshaw was eventually subbed in on Saturday in the 79th minute for Fabian Castillo.
Hyndman says nothing is set in stone when it comes to the midfield. He said players battling for starting spots can benefit the team, a process that will continue for Jacobson, Watson and Warshaw.
“I think the three of those players will get an opportunity to continue to compete,” Hyndman said.
Full match highlights from FC Dallas' 1-0 win over the Colorado Rapids.
GOAL: Jackson capitalizes on Ceus' error to give FCD the lead.
SAVE: Raul Fernandez denies Pablo Mastroeni.
SAVE: Fernandez makes a one on one stop against rookie Deshorn Brown.
The 2013 season is coming quickly and the star of TNT's Dallas, Jesse Metcalfe AKA Christopher Ewing, will be scarfing the Lamar Hunt statue before the season opener at FC Dallas Stadium. More details will be released soon about how you can help the North Texas Food Bank in connection with Metcalfe's scarfing.
— FC Dallas (@FCDallas) February 12, 2013
For the second consecutive year, Major League Soccer has set new marks for attendance.
Overall, the league average grew more than five percent, coming in at 18,807. This bettered the 2011 mark of 17,844 by nearly 1,000 fans per game.
MLS regular-season attendance in 2012 topped the 6 million mark for the first time ever, with a total of 6,074,729 fans.
MLS also finished seventh in global average attendance.
CLICK HERE to read more details & global attendance chart to see where MLS ranks.
Full match highlights from FC Dallas' 2-2 draw with Chivas USA.
GOAL: David Ferreira sets up Jackson for the opening goal of the game in the 73rd minute.
GOAL: Ferreira gets his second assist as he feeds Fabian Castillo on the wing for the 2-0 lead.
GOAL: Second half substitute Laurent Courtois pulls one back for Chivas USA in the 90th minute.
GOAL: Juan Agudelo ties the match in the fourth minute of stoppage time.
Full match highlights from FCD's 1-1 draw with Chivas USA.
GOAL: Blas Perez puts away a rebound off Dan Kennedy to put FCD up 1-0.
SAVE: Hernan Pertuz clears Miller Bolanos' header off the line to preserve the lead.
SAVE: Kevin Hartman denies Jorge Villafana the equalizing goal.
SAVE: Hartman pushes Juan Pablo Angel's chance over the crossbar.
GOAL: Villafana ties the game for Chivas USA in the second half.
SAVE: Hartman's kick save denies Juan Agudelo's attempt at the go-ahead goal.
FRISCO – FC Dallas has been keeping an eye on Vancouver as they chase the Whitecaps for the fifth and final playoff spot.
Tonight they will multi-task: keep tabs on the ‘Caps and scout their next opponent, Chivas USA.
Vancouver hosts Chivas USA in a Wednesday night match-up at BC Place (9 p.m. CT on MLS Live) and FC Dallas head coach Schellas Hyndman says he and his players will be watching.
“Will they experiment with new players and give them a chance? Maybe a card. Maybe an injury. There’s a lot of things we’ll be interested in,” Hyndman said of Chivas USA.
Hyndman said FCD has already drawn up a game plan that they’ve been working on in training this week for Chivas USA, so the serious scouting has been done. But the coaching staff will be looking to see if there’s any changes or adjustments they might need to make.
The mid-week match is also a potential advantage for FC Dallas.
“Our schedule now is lightening up where we have games once a week. We’re starting to find other teams now having games twice a week.,” Hyndman said. “Chivas is playing on the road in Vancouver then they get us at home. That’s two games to be played in a short window.”