Academy recap: FCD remains undefeated in Spain
MADRID, Spain – Both of the FC Dallas Academy teams are undefeated thus far in Spain heading into their respective matches against the academy teams of Real Madrid tomorrow. The U-16s kicked off 30 minutes ahead of the U-18s against Rayo Vallecano at the Rayo Vallecano training complex in south Madrid. The teams played two 40-minute halves, and FC Dallas came out on top 1-0 off a goal by Bobby Edet.
Rayo Vallecano played an extremely technically sound game, and they opened up the scoring chances in the 12th minute when they sent a shot just over the FC Dallas crossbar. They were back again seven minutes later when a forward dribbled the ball past an FCD defender and let off a shot that was held onto by goalkeeper Caleb Underwood.
Captain Alex Frankenfeld said the opposition’s early attacks required the team to make some adjustments, but that maintaining their defensive shape was key to staying in the game early.
“We adjusted pretty well,” said Frankenfeld. “We managed to keep our backline straight and not get too deep or too flat, but also play fast and maintain the ball possession.”
Off of Underwood’s distribution, Dallas would get a chance to score in the next minute, but forward Gabriel Cano sent the ball just wide to the left of the far post. FCD got a chance to score again in the first half when Emerson Hyndman got a shot off from the top of the six-yard box, but the shot was held by Rayo’s ‘keeper.
Rayo got the last scoring chance of the first half in the 32nd minute when they were awarded a free kick. The ball was chipped in over the wall, but Underwood made the save to keep the score 0-0.
FC Dallas would open the second half with a barrage of scoring chances. In the 41st minute Cano got a look at the goal, but he sent his shot just over the crossbar.
In the 44th minute Marco Carrizales stole the ball in the midfield and passed it ahead to Gabriel Cano. Cano sent a pass into the right side of the box for Edet. Rayo’s ‘keeper came off his line to challenge for the 50-50 ball, but Edet beat him to it and chipped the ball over his head and into the goal to give FC Dallas the 1-0 lead.
In the next minute FC Dallas would nearly double the lead, but Jairo Villalta’s shot on goal was stopped by Rayo’s ‘keeper.
In the 57th minute the home team made a change in goal, and then would immediately get a chance to tie the game. A Rayo forward rocketed a shot in that was aimed perfectly for the top far corner of the FC Dallas goal. Underwood jumped to his left and extended his right hand just enough to make the save of the game and preserve the lead for Dallas.
FC Dallas made a series of substitutions as the game progressed, using all six of their available subs by the 68th minute. In the 75th Rayo was awarded a free kick on the right side of the field. The shot made it past the wall and was cleared off the line by defender Christian Garcia. The final scoring chance of the game came in the 79th minute when Edet tried to double his goal count from the top left corner of the penalty area, but the shot on goal was saved to end the game at 1-0 in favor of FCD.
“To come here and get a win against a team of that caliber speaks volumes for the program and how much progress the kids in this program have made,” said coach Chris Hayden. “I don’t think a year ago we could have won like this with these kids, but now I see a lot more confident team, a team that really has an identity, a team that has some talent. I was really pleased with the result.”
Hayden said the only factor that worries him heading into tomorrow’s match against Real Madrid is the fatigue of playing back-to-back games in a 24-hour timeframe.
“The biggest challenge we’ll have is just the quick turnaround,” Hayden said. “We’re playing a very good team, a team with a hundred-year history. We’re very excited about the opportunity to play against Real Madrid. I know the kids are very excited about it.”
FC Dallas – 44’ Edet (Cano, Carrizales)
FC Dallas starting lineup: Underwood (Gonzalez 68’), Frankenfeld, Garcia, Ashby, Herrera (Dunbar 65’), Ortiz (Garza 60’), Carrizales, Villalta (Coleman 52’), Hyndman (Rodriguez 65’), Edet, Cano (Chapa 52’)
U-18s: FC Dallas 0, Atletico Majadahonda 0
Thirty minutes after the U-16 kickoff, the U-18s kicked off on the north side of Madrid against Atletico Majadahonda, an affiliate club of Atletico Madrid. Home Grown players Jonathan Top and Victor Ulloa both had goals in the game that were called back as offside. In a game with multiple cautions issued to each side, the teams played to a scoreless draw in what was described as a very physical game.
“There was nothing on the dirty side or anything like that, it was just very physical by both teams,” said coach Francisco Molina. “They started to get a little bit physical first and then we had to meet and match that. I think it helped us a lot though. We started the game a little relaxed and once they started fouling and we started getting those fouls in our favor, we had to step it up.”
The U-18s will play the first game of the day tomorrow when they face Real Madrid at 5:00 p.m. The U-16 are scheduled to kickoff at the conclusion of that match at 6:45 p.m.
FOLLOW THE TRIP: Behind-the-scenes