FC Dallas Training: 09/23
Its 15-game unbeaten streak on life support less than 12 hours ago, FC Dallas put last night’s unbelievable comeback behind them and returned to the adidas Field at 8:30 a.m. CT for training. The first team participated in a regeneration session conducted by Michael Johnson Performance’s Steward Carlisle. The reserves trained with FC Dallas coaches Schellas Hyndman and John Ellinger. Injured Ugo Ihemelu (concussion), George John (hamstring), Daniel Hernandez (hamstring) and Kevin Hartman (MCL) worked out on the sideline with the FC Dallas training staff.
Last night’s draw against New England lowered the number of teams currently outside the playoff picture that could possibly bump FC Dallas from a playoff position to three (Chicago, Toronto and Kansas City). Currently at 43 points, Chivas USA, New England, Philadelphia, Houston and D.C. United cannot mathematically catch FC Dallas.
While FC Dallas cannot clinch a playoff position Saturday against Kansas City, a win would lower the Wizards’ maximum points possible to 48 and give FCD 46 points. Reaching the 46 point plateau would add Toronto to the list of teams unable to catch FCD for a playoff spot. That scenario would also mean FC Dallas would clinch a playoff spot with a win on Saturday, Oct. 2 against Chicago.
Beating Chicago and Kansas City would boost FC Dallas to 49 points, five points beyond the maximum reach of Chicago and one point clear of the Kansas City Wizards. Should FC Dallas’ trek to Kansas City result in a loss or a draw, the team would not be in position to clinch against Chicago.
In four groups of three, the reserves played a possession with mentality drill. Hyndman gave constant insight focusing on movement off of the ball, utilizing the width of the training area and the importance of keeping the ball in motion.
The drill transitioned into a crossing drill when the coach divided the teams into two groups of six. One group continued the possession drill with the goal of beating three defenders and getting off a solid cross. The other group, stationed at the top of the box, sought to finish off the cross.
Peri Marosevic’s orange group was the first to get off a solid cross, but the blue team soon ran away with two consecutive balls into the area. The latter of the two was finished off nicely by Jason Yeisley, who ducked in front of his defender and chipped a ball to the back post behind MLS pool goalkeeper Chris Sharpe.
Hyndman officially brought training to an end at 9:25 a.m.
Hartman staying sharp
Following his recovery workout with the FCD training staff, Hartman donned some gloves and joined Sharpe and FC Dallas Goalkeeper Coach Drew Keeshan. Despite his MCL injury, Hartman showed off his enduring work ethic by catching shots volleyed off the foot of Keeshan while sitting down.
The reserves continued to work well after practice concluded. They set up a small-sided game with tiny goals at each end and played for nearly 45 minutes.