As you probably already know, FC Dallas captain Matt Hedges and reigning AT&T MLS Rookie of the Year Tesho Akindele are currently in training camp with the U.S. Men's National Team. Before heading to Santiago, Chile next week for the USMNT's first friendly of the year, the boys have been training in Carson, CA at the StubHub Center, home of the LA Galaxy.
Our friends at the Galaxy were kind enough to snap some training photos and send them our way this week. So we picked out EVERY photo featuring Matt or Tesho (whether they were the focus of the picture or not) to share with you. ENJOY!
Photo Credit: Hana Asano (Click on photo for larger version)
Headers with Matt!
Kicks with Tesho!
Tesho lurking in the background.
How many differences can you spot in this photo?
"Do blondes really have more fun?"
Tesho vs. Jermaine! Fourth of July preview, anyone?
Blurry Tesho photobomb!
We're down to the final four in the 2014 MLS Save of the Year competition and Raul Fernandez has made the cut for his incredible, acrobatic, stupendous and ridiculous double save at Seattle earlier this season. We might be biased, but c'mon this is the best save out of these four. Let's get Raul the win!
Toyota is giving you the chance to meet FC Dallas Homegrown players Moises Hernandez and Victor Ulloa at the State Fair of Texas on Saturday, September 27. The players will be signing autographs and taking photos from 3-4pm at the Toyota outdoor display (above) on Saturday afternoon.
Fans can also get photos with FCD mascot Tex Hooper, or arrive early at 2pm to get photos with the FC Dallas Girls.
FC Dallas had three players named to MLSsoccer.com's 2014 24 Under 24, presented by adidas. The annual list highlights the top 24 players in Major League Soccer under the age of 24 as voted on by a panel of various members of the soccer media.
Fabian Castillo checks in at No. 3 on the list this season in the midst of a career year for the young Colombian. Castillo has accrued nine goals and four assists so far in 2014, including an 11-game point streak across all competitions over the summer. The 22-year-old forward has appeared on the list for four seasons running.
Mauro Diaz makes his 24 Under 24 debut at No. 6 in just his first full year in MLS. The Argentine playmaker has three goals and three assists in what's been an injury-shortened 2014 season. All three of those assists and two of the goals came in the month of March when Diaz was voted Etihad Airways Player of the Month.
The final Dallas player to make the cut in 2014 is rookie Tesho Akindele. The first year forward came in at No. 23 after breaking the FC Dallas franchise record for goals by a rookie with seven scored on the year (so far). The Colorado School of Mines product has also contributed three assists this season and is widely considered a leading contender for 2014 Rookie of the Year.
What do you think of FCD's three representatives on this year's 24 Under 24? Should any other Dallas players have made the cut? Let us know in the comments section below.
Everything's comin' up Dallas this week in MLS; after FCD beat Vancouver 2-1 this weekend, the team moved up in the MLSsoccer.com Power Rankings and Blas Perez was named Player of the Week and nominated for AT&T Goal of the Week.
And now Perez, Homegrown midfielder Victor Ulloa and centerback Matt Hedges have been named to MLSsoccer.com's Team of the Week. Here's what the staff at the league site had to say about the FCD trio:
D: Matt Hedges (FC Dallas) – The Dallas central defense was physical, sharp and organized all evening in their 2-1 win over Vancouver, and Hedges was a main reason why.
M: Victor Ulloa (FC Dallas) – The kid is legit. He was very effective in the center of the park against Vancouver and deserves more hype than he's gotten so far.
F: Blas Pérez (FC Dallas) – Relatively few theatrics and measured efficiency from the Canalero, which worked well given his recent efforts – two games in a week – with Panama. Crazy golazo to boot.
In case you haven't heard Blas Perez is coming off a pretty good week. Not only did the Panamanian forward score twice in the Copa Centroamericana while on international duty, but he also bagged a brace for FC Dallas in a 2-1 win over Vancouver Whitecaps FC on Saturday to earn an MLS Player of the Week award.
Super Raton has a chance to win another award based on his stellar week as his first goal against Vancouver is nominated for AT&T MLS Goal of the Week. You can watch the video above to check out the "competition" if you want, but you might as well save yourself the time and just vote for Blas now.
Voting runs until 11:59 pm PT on Thursdays. For complete coverage of the AT&T MLS Goal of the Week — including an archive of all of this season's nominees and winners — click here.
The undefeated FC Dallas Reserves will host future Major League Soccer side Orlando City Soccer Club at Toyota Stadium on Tuesday, April 22 at 7pm. Orlando City is playing out its final season in USL Pro before joining the MLS ranks in 2015.
FC Dallas forward Cobi Span (right, photo courtesy of Orlando City SC), who joined Orlando on loan on April 2, will be eligible to play against his FC Dallas teammates on Tuesday.
It's a unique situation for Span, who scored the game-winning goal in his OCSC debut on April 12 before being recalled by FC Dallas for a Reserve match against Oklahoma City Energy FC on April 15 in which he assisted on Andrew Jacobson's game-winning goal. But on Tuesday the young forward will be lining up against the players who were his teammates last week.
“I don’t know who is going to play exactly, but I’m going to know all the guys,” Span told OrlandoCitySoccer.com of playing against FC Dallas. “It’s a pretty big friendly match for me. It’s going to be fun playing against a team where you know everybody.”
Just as Span was recalled for last week's Reserve match, FC Dallas has recalled Homegrown forward Jonathan Top (right, photo courtesy of Arizona United SC) from his loan with USL Pro's Arizona United SC for Tuesday's game against Orlando City. Top returns to Frisco fresh off scoring the game-winning goal for Arizona United on Saturday night to help the new club to it's first win as a franchise.
The FC Dallas Reserves will kick off against Orlando City SC at 7pm on Tuesday night and parking and admission into Toyota Stadium will be FREE.
You could meet some of your favorite FC Dallas players this week with two Meet & Greets scheduled at local Fiesta locations this Thursday, April 17 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Homegrown players Victor Ulloa and Moises Hernandez will be at the Fiesta at 8060 Spring Valley Road and Colombian duo Fabian Castillo and Jair Benitez will be at the Fiesta at 1200 E. Parker Road in Plano.
In addition to the Meet & Greets, Fiesta and Budweiser are giving fans the chance to win a trip to Seattle to watch FC Dallas take on Sounders FC at CenturyLink Field on Wednesday, May 7. Fans can enter to win by texting DALLAS to 839863.
Veteran Dallas Morning News writer Rick Gosselin featured rookie midfielder Ryan Hollingshead (right) in his column this week. Gosselin wrote about Hollingshead's decision to postpone starting his professional career in favor of spending a year helping his brother start a new church in Sacramento.
“When I said I was going to go help start that church and forgo that year of soccer,” Hollingshead said, “I did not expect to come back [to soccer]. Not because I didn’t want to or that the desire wasn’t there. More because I thought that was my chance — either you come and play now or it’s off the table.
“I wanted to play. But I wanted to plant this church first. That’s what God was calling us to do. Once they left the offer on the table, I took it.”
Read the full article HERE.