FRISCO, Texas — FC Dallas know exactly what they have to do in order to emerge from their five-game winless streak at the Columbus Crew on Saturday night (6:30 p.m. CT, Fox Sports Southwest): Score goals.
In their last five matches (0-3-2), FCD have been shut out three times and scored only two goals: both were penalty kicks converted by Brek Shea.
“I think the key to beating Columbus will be scoring some goals,” manager Schellas Hyndman said. “That’s an easy statement to make, but if you look at our recent performances, we’re not scoring. For us to find success, it’s got to be scoring goals.
“I don’t think we’ve created enough quality threats to give us repetition. It seems like the player who has the great opportunity is just not putting it away. We just got to finish.”
Finishing is what Hyndman wants to see out of his young forward Fabián Castillo (above). In 29 appearances with the club, the 19-year-old has only notched two goals despite creating a slew of scoring opportunities.
“[Finishing] is not one of his strengths,” Hyndman said. “He needs to work on it. We need to help him and encourage him. We need more out of him, whether it’s finishing or whether it’s the final pass.”
Against Seattle in a 2-0 midweek loss, Castillo played with energy and wreaked havoc with his blazing speed. However, he failed to finish the opportunities he created due to a lack of control and touch. He had four shots that finished off target and only one that hit the frame.
“Fabián, I think can be the most dynamic player in the league,” Hyndman said. “So much of it is the pure speed. What Fabián is learning is to release the ball. Sometimes, he gets too focused on taking on the whole team. Fabián can do a better job on the quality of final balls.
“He’s just got to slow down a little bit and find people. What separates him from being a world-class player because he’s got all the athleticism, is scoring.”
Castillo will be assisted against Columbus by the return of fellow striker Blas Pérez, who served a one-game suspension in midweek. FC Dallas will also be getting back Daniel Hernandez, but Hyndman will still continue to battle a bevy of injuries and a gruesome schedule that has left the team exhausted.
“Right now, Columbus is not having a great year,” Hyndman said. “They’ve never played a midweek game, which is horrible when you look at parity in the league. It seems like we live on midweek games.
"We’re going in there tired. We’ve had two difficult games and now we’re playing a team that hasn’t played since last Saturday. I think you’ll see a fresh team, and we’ll have to battle and score goals.”