Jason Minnick

FCD training report: August 20

FC Dallas worked 11 versus 11 against the reserves again today in preparation for tomorrow’s match against Chivas USA (7:30 p.m. CT). The starting 11 from last weekend’s 3-1 win over D.C. United was still intact.

FC Dallas: 4-1-4-1
GK: Kevin Hartman

4: Jair Benitez, George John, Zach Loyd, Heath Pearce

1: Daniel Hernandez

4: Atiba Harris, Eric Alexander, David Ferreira, Brek Shea

1: Milton Rodriguez

Avila Sets Up Goal

The reserve squad picked up a goal late in the session on a play which began with some nice work down the left flank by Eric Avila. The 22-year-old attacking midfielder beat his defender and cut down the end line towards goal. Avila forced goalkeeper Kevin Hartman to stay at the front post to defend against the shot before slipping a pass across the mouth of the goal. The pass ricocheted off a group of players before Marvin Chavez knocked the ball home at the far post.

Sala Makes Two Great Saves

Moments later David Ferreira found some space at the other end of the pitch. The MLS All-Star cut back hard to avoid a defender before leaving a ball for Milton Rodriguez to hammer towards goal. Goalkeeper Dario Sala did well to deflect the well-struck ball, but the rebound trickled free to Brek Shea, who was charging in from the left flank. Shea controlled the ball and put another shot low to the near post, but Sala was too quick and made a diving save to his right.

Defending Set Pieces

Following the drill, Avila played some corners in against the first team defense. Playing the part of Chivas today were FC Dallas’ Jeff Cunningham, Edson Edward, Moises Hernandez, Jackson and Bruno Guarda. The focus remained on defending while Avila moved around the field, serving in balls to the back post and even hitting a few free kicks directly on goal from just outside the box.

Kyle Davies Back From Injury

Practice concluded with some offensive set pieces from Daniel Hernandez and Ferreira. In his first practice back after returning from a strained hamstring, Kyle Davies saw limited action -- but was able to stand in the wall during this drill.

“It is very good to see Kyle back at training,” Hyndman said. “If you remember the first game of the year, he was one of our starters before getting injured (broken right arm). It helps us a lot to have another player we can count on.”

Ugo Watch

The FC Dallas training staff is keeping a close eye on Ugo Ihemelu (concussion). The SMU product underwent another day of testing to determine the defender’s improvement.

“Ugo showed signs of improvement in the first test he took but not the second,” Hyndman said. “[FC Dallas Head Athletic Trainer] Josh Watts has done a good job of staying on top of the situation. It is a high priority for us."