FC Dallas’ two home grown midfielders, Victor Ulloa and Kellyn Acosta, put in stellar performances against the in-state rivals, the Houston Dynamo, setting the foundation for a comfortable 2-0 victory to win the season series.
As the dual-pivot in front of the defense, their strong play in the midfield was able to dictate the pace of the game and each hit crosses to Fabian Castillo where the young Colombian proceeded to tear up the Dynamo defense, leaving the ball in the back of Tyler Deric’s net.
Acosta was visibly confident and he came out with a lot of energy and tried two shots early in the first half. Both were blocked, but it was positive from the youngster who returned from the U-20 World Cup two weeks ago.
“I felt like I was in a good spot to get the ball and luckily the ball landed to me, and Oscar always encourages us to shoot, so I did,” Acosta said. “Unluckily they got a foot on it.”
Acosta also had a chance late on in the match on Friday night. His shot from the right side of the box hit the side netting. Acosta knows his mistake.
“I should have taken it far post. I should have taken another touch – I rushed it,” said Acosta.
It was very positive for any person that watches FC Dallas week in and week out to see Acosta have the outstanding pass to assist Castillo’s goal, and to see him shooting from range. His game grows with each week of play.
“I thought it was a good game overall, we won our three points. It gives you more confidence for sure,” said Acosta.
“I’ve got to give credit to my coaching staff in the way they have been managing Kellyn since he came back from the World Cup,” said head coach Oscar Pareja. “Credit to that coaching staff, we have a healthy team.”
Acosta’s partner in midfield, Ulloa, has never made a national team appearance, but his story is possibly the best exhibit for the strength of the FC Dallas youth system. A young midfielder, Ulloa has shown he can go full 90 minutes every time he is called in the middle of the field, on a team that appears headed to the playoffs for the second season in a row. In fact, he has played a full 90 minutes in every MLS game for FC Dallas this year, and is the only player to do so. Recently, he has shown his passing ability from a defensive midfield position as well.
Friday night, Ulloa had an interception near midfield to start an attack, and he made three recoveries after Dallas lost the ball. He is the workhorse in the middle of the FC Dallas midfield.
Both of these players are homegrown FC Dallas academy products, who have very bright MLS futures. As their time together with FC Dallas continues to grow, so does their confidence and Pareja’s confidence in them.