As I stood and watched practice on Thursday morning. One thought kept going through my head. How does this team control their own destiny to win the Supporters’ Shield in the middle of September? It’s plagued a lot of minds and every time you think they don’t have a chance, they win a game and get help from Vancouver, Los Angeles, and the New York Red Bulls to get right back in it. Now comes an extremely brutal two game road trip that starts at Sporting Kansas City. Yes, Kansas City has only got one point in their last five, but Dallas knows what it’s like to have a five game road trip. Now Kansas City is home and hungry for a win. Do they have the energy to do it though is the question. Here is the projected lineup
Goalkeeper: Jesse Gonzalez
He grows each week and gets better
Left Back: Je-Vaughn Watson
Watson needs a big game, well the entire defense does.
Center Back: Matt Hedges
Hedges has been on fire the last few weeks. You have to be concerned though if he has enough in the tank to make it the rest of the season though.
Center Back: Zach Loyd
Loyd got sent off in the last league game right before the end of the first half. I doubt he makes that mistake twice.
Right Back: Atiba Harris
Harris was not apart of the team’s bad performance in the last league game. He has been playing well the last month. He can’t afford to give up another penalty though.
Central Defensive Midfielder: Michel
Victor Ulloa is likely to miss again this week. Before you freak out, Michel did not do that bad last week. More importantly, Michel is likely playing for a spot on this team in 2016.
Central Defensive Midfielder: Kellyn Acosta
Acosta did not play in the last league game in Kansas City. You would think he would make a lot more of a difference than Kyle Bekker.
Left Wing: Fabian Castillo
Castillo has something he has not had all season over the last few weeks, help on the other side of the field. If Dallas wants to survive this, he needs to be ready for a fight.
Right Wing: Micheal Barrios
Easily the newcomer of the year on this team. He went from maybe not having a spot on this team in 2016 to a regular starter.
Striker: David Texeira
You may not like him, but he does a lot of the little things that go unnoticed like play defense and draw defenders. If he was able to finish better, he would be a very dangerous man up top.
Striker: Tesho Akindele
Tesho is warming up. Two goals in his last two games with the team. He gained steam late last season. Could he did it again?
One team is hot and the other is ice cold. We have seen this story before though. FC Dallas was coming off a miserable road trip and took out a relatively decent Houston side. Now Dallas goes into Kansas City, a place that is desperate for points and knows time is ticking. Kansas City is coming off a two game week last week including a Sunday game. Kansas City has enough quality to get a win in this game, but FC Dallas has a speed and stamina advantage. Does the Dallas back line and central defensive midfielders have what it takes to stop Kansas City in their place? We will all soon find out shortly. I think Kansas City will be desperate enough to go for three points. For FC Dallas, a draw is what they need to stay in the Shield race and I think that’s what happens.
FC Dallas ties Sporting Kansas City 1-1