There’s just eight weeks to go in an MLS season that feels like it started a few weeks ago and the race for the Supporter’s Shield has tightened up considerably since we last took a look at the standings a couple of weeks ago. At the last look, I said there was four teams with a reasonable shot, but New York has forced themselves into the discussion with two wins out of two and a struggling Galaxy team.
Let’s take a look at the standings
The obvious thing at first glance is that what was a 10 point lead over the fourth place team has dwindled to just a 6 point lead from first to fifth. Two Galaxy losses in a row coupled with a good couple of weeks for Columbus, Dallas and New York have thrown the race into haywire.
A team by team look at things after the jump including my ridiculous odds for each team to win the Shield.
While most of the US Soccer world is buzzing about the contract extension of Bob Bradley, which you’re not coming here to read about, there’s a little bit of FC Dallas news and other tidbits to kill some time at work.
Steve Hunt’s FCD Notebook tells us that Schellas isn’t worried about Milton or Kevin Hartman.
“What a great ball he gave to Brek, and Brek’s first touch takes him away from the goal,” Hyndman said. “If Brek puts the ball in front of him, I think we win the game 1-0.”
“It’s no different than an NFL player that you throw a ball to and he drops it,” Hyndman said. “It’s the simplest ball. Nobody’s around him and he takes his eyes off it and drops the ball. I think Kevin … felt somebody was going to come in and hit him. He took his eyes off [the ball and it] came out of his hand.”
More from Steve, power rankings, US Soccer snubs the south again after the jump
Don’t call Schellas “a wheeler and dealer” at the next practice…Hilarious but very NSFW audio from Harry Redknapp
So I’m super late to the game on this one due to work craziness, but FC Dallas earned a point in Columbus by way of a 0-0 draw on Saturday afternoon setting the all-time MLS road unbeaten record at 10 games.
-My instant reaction after watching the game was “that wasn’t pretty, but that’s exactly the kind of road result FC Dallas will need to grind out in a first round playoff series.” There’s nothing exciting or sexy about the 0-0 road draw, but if FC Dallas hopefully plays their first playoff game on the road, this game is all you’re really looking for. Credit to the entire team for fighting and coming close to snatching 3 points at one of the top teams in the league.
-No matter what happens for the rest of the season, the team has achieved something great with the 10-game road unbeaten streak. When looking at the all-time league record book, you don’t see FCD’s name very often so this is something to really be proud of.
-I thought yesterday was the first time Dallas really missed Ugo Ihemelu in the back four as opposed to Zach Loyd. Renteria, who is a beast by the way, was giving Loyd fits all afternoon and I was petrified that he was going to give up a penalty fouling Renteria before the game was over. I hated Warzycha’s substitution of him in the second half as Renteria was Columbus’ most dangerous player the entire game.
-You can never criticize a defense too much when they pitch a shutout, but I thought it was an up and down game from the back four. You could clearly see they were seriously dialed in on any set piece opportunity, as Schellas talked about all week, but during the run of play Columbus was giving the back four all kinds of fits. I suppose it’s good coaching to defend against a team’s strengths like that though.
More thoughts on the game and links after the jump
A crazy work schedule this weekend is going to prevent much posting, so let’s take an early look at the biggest game of the season so far with FC Dallas heading to Columbus to take on a Crew side that is still seething from their last second loss at Santos Laguna mid-week.
We should see the exact same lineup from FC Dallas as the Chivas game with Milton Rodriguez staying at forward and Eric Alexander holding down the midfield. Kyle Davies could make a return to the bench, but it will be no Ugo or Dax again.
FC Dallas’ approach to the game, from everything Schellas has said, will be to get all 3 points, but with 9 wins from 11 home games(a home point total only equaled by Real Salt Lake), Crew Stadium is arguably the toughest place in the league to win.
After the jump, a key Crew player who will be out for the weekend, preview videos from Brek Shea, the team beat-writers and MLSSoccer.com staff as well as my game prediction.
It’s a move that has probably been coming for a long time as the blog lately has simply been a conduit for posting the in-house produced videos as well as training schedules. Frankly has been pretty much useless for close to a year now, but I’ll still be sad to see what was once an MLS trendsetter be de-activated.
Anyone who has been a fan of FC Dallas for a few years now has no doubt spent hours of entertainment reading the 100+ comment bitch-fests during the awful 2008 season and the ridiculous digital lynching of Bruno Guarda through the 2009 season.
Hopefully, this ushers in a new era for FCDallas.com where the most basic of things like standings and the next FC Dallas game are posted on the front page of the website. The new training updates have been a great addition and reason to have hope for the future.
For now, I’ll pour a little bit of my beer at the next FC Dallas home game on the ground in remembrance of WorldCupWay.blogspot.com and for anyone who misses the old days and wants to bring back the insanely ridiculous comments….always remember bigdsoccer will never censor you(except negative comments about the University of Oklahoma).