FRISCO, Texas — Ahead of the 2018 MLS Homegrown Game against the Tigres U-20s, FC Dallas had two representatives with three combined starts in league play. Paxton Pomykal and Jesus Ferreira represented Dallas in the city of Atlanta last season, and both are now consistent starters for FC Dallas in 2019.
In a way, both represented the pathway FC Dallas Homegrowns can take while trying to make a name for themselves on the national stage. Both earned minutes here and there in the past few years, but it wasn't until this season where they are both making a significant contribution to their club.
This season, FC Dallas has four representatives in Orlando, Florida, at the 2019 MLS Homegrown Game where they will face the Guadalajara U-20s. Brandon Servania, Edwin Cerrillo, Thomas Roberts and Bryan Reynolds form the quartet of FCD players in 2019, but this season's FCD representatives are a bit different from their teammates who played in the game last year.
Between the four, there is a total of 33 appearances and 20 starts at the MLS level. The four have more experience at this point in their careers for FC Dallas than a usual Homegrown would anywhere else. It shows the commitment and the trust FC Dallas and Head Coach Luchi Gonzalez have had with the Academy and its development.
“I think we have a lot of talented Homegrowns this year," Pomykal said. "They could only select so many of them to go to the Homegrown game. A personal experience of mine, I thought it was a great thing for me to go with a bunch of other guys around the league, my friends, and just kind of get away from the team and be able to go and be rewarded for getting some minutes. I think those guys are happy. Hopefully, they get more minutes in the future, and obviously they’re getting rewarded for what they’ve already done.”
Jesus Ferreira playing in the 2018 MLS Homegrown Game
Servania has the most experience for FC Dallas among the four traveling for the Homegrown game, and he's recently become a reliable option in the midfield for the club. He got to represent the United States at the U-20 World Cup in Poland where he started multiple times as well.
This season, Servania has started in 10 games and has made 11 total appearances.
“It shows that the club believes in the young players," Servania said. "We just have to earn our spot, and we’re all working hard every day to earn that spot. I think the Homegrown game is a way to show that we all have talent, we all have potential. Even though we may not have starting MLS minutes right now, we have potential in the future. I think the Homegrown game is a great way to show that.”
As for the advice that Pomykal and Ferreira can give to this year's representatives, all they have to say is to keep working and keep your head down.
“They just have to enjoy it," Ferreira said. "Go out there and enjoy it, and try to win. Always try to show what they got and what they can do. They just have to come back and use that experience of playing an international game to learn for the rest of this season.”