FRISCO - Preseason is in full swing for FC Dallas, but time is already running out before the first big test of the year.
Three weeks from Thursday, on February 23, the club will embark on their first CONCACAF Champions League Quarterfinal appearance as Panamanian-side Arabe Unido comes to Toyota Stadium for Leg One.
The shortened preseason schedule has changed how Oscar Pareja and his staff have approached the couple short weeks they have to prepare.
“The intensity has obviously been there from Day One. We know that we are kind of short on time in terms of our preseason, but the boys have been putting in work,” goalkeeper Chris Seitz said. “We have to start playing earlier to start earlier since we're starting a week and a half earlier than normal.”
“It's shorter and that made us think about being more economical in preparation in terms of the timing,” Pareja said. “It's important to have competition, it's important to have volume, it's important to have frequency and it's important to get in the game mode after the last 10 days where we have been strengthening the guys.”
The high volume and frequency will go into full swing next week when the team departs to Argentina for 10 days. After two full weeks of two-a-day trainings in Frisco, FCD is planning eight straight days of friendlies to ramp up the game-like mentality in preparation for February 23.
“You need games throughout preseason and for us, that trip is designed for exactly that,” Seitz said. “I think the idea is to overload us on games and obviously not just get our shape down, but our attacking style as well. Those games are going to be a good exercise for that.”
“It's important to get to Argentina to get some games. We have done a few weeks already with a lot of intensity and a lot of sessions. Now the time comes for preparation for the games. It seems like three weeks is just around the corner already.”