MONDAY MAILBAG: Defensive Midfield Position Battles, Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Talk and More

FRISCO - FC Dallas brought home their first road result of 2018 on Saturday, but it’s right back to work as the Philadelphia Union visit Toyota Stadium this weekend. Before we turn the page to the week ahead, let’s take some questions from the Mailbag!

“With Acosta returning soon, is there way to get him and Hayes on the field together? Maybe benching Gruezo? Or playing him under A single striker like we do with Diaz?” - Chance

The obvious choice if you want to see Kellyn Acosta and Jacori Hayes on the field at the same time is to sit Carlos Gruezo like was done this weekend. It’s a real possibility given the stellar play of Hayes in the early going, but Acosta still has to earn his place on the field. Don’t forget about Victor Ulloa competing for time as a fully defensive-minded midfielder like he did this weekend.

We’ve seen Kellyn play a more advanced role at times, but I don’t think we’ll see the whole trio on the field to start a game. What’s more likely to happen is similar to what Oscar Pareja did in New England - a trio of defensive midfielders to close out a game. Regardless, there’s a very interesting battle for time on the horizon in the midfield.

When does FCD start Lamar Hunt US Open Cup play? And do you think we will see more of our young players once it starts?” - Marcus Cole

One game at a time, Marcus! The Fourth Round of U.S. Open Cup play is slated to begin in the first week of June, a 5th-7th window as it stands now. From there, games are traditionally every two weeks for the opening handful of rounds, putting a potential Fifth Round match during the MLS World Cup Break. More details on everything Open Cup to come as we get closer.

As always, you will see a healthy mix of younger players and starters in the opening round at least. Depending on the rest of the schedule will dictate who plays in what games. If there’s an MLS game within a few days, then you’ll see some depth. If there’s no game within the immediate schedule, then you could see a full-bore roster. Also consider that FCD is only allowed to dress five international players per match, so there could be some turnover there based on roster limitations. Of the eight players below, three would have to sit:

  • Michael Barrios
  • Cristian Colman
  • Carlos Gruezo
  • Maynor Figueroa
  • Roland Lamah
  • Santiago Mosquera
  • Anton Nedyalkov
  • Reto Ziegler

“Are you willing to grow the beard out ’til FC Dallas loses?” - Isaac Arrington

No. It’s a playoff/winter thing.