Well after a week off of Major League Soccer action it is time for Real Salt Lake to get in one more match before the league FIFA break, so with FC Dallas already in town what better way to get ready than 3 questions with Big D Soccer?
So let's find out what is going on inside the minds behind Big D Soccer:
1) With FC Dallas in the middle of a run that has seen them go without a win in their last 8 matches, I know that one major issue has been injuries that just seem to keep mounting but we have also seen some mental breakdowns. Brek Shea's kicking the ball at an official, and then rumors of a post-match red card Wednesday night in Chicago, has the pressure started getting to players who expect better of themselves?
A) "A few games ago I would've said no, but things are really starting to wear on FC Dallas. You're right that some players who expect more out of themselves have been making uncharacteristic errors like Zach Loyd and Daniel Hernandez while there's just no one on offense in a good rhythm right now. As I'm sure many know, FCD is a team that hasn't won in eight games, just two off the franchise record and the team is definitely showing a few cracks. The one positive to everything is that after Saturday's game, FCD only has two games in the entire month of June to get their heads right, get healthy and gets their stars back on the field. What were all wondering is if it's too late."
2) I know RSL fans have been very frustrated with some of the strange calls and non-calls of the officials this year, in the 2-1 loss at Chicago the winning goal was scored by Marco Pappa who clearly entered the area before the Fire PK had been taken, which is a violation of the rules. Have the FC Dallas fans, become very jaded like most of the RSL fans are when it comes to the officials and expecting matches to be called fairly and correctly?
A) "Man it's just one thing after another with these referees. In the Columbus game two weeks ago it was Zach Loyd sent off for two yellow cards byt Justin Meram committing three slam dunk yellow card fouls and only receiving one yellow for a kick to Hernan Perutz' throat. Then the next game against Philadelphia Michael Lahoud, already on a yellow card, goes in studs up on Perutz in a play that has put Pertuz out of action for a month while a foul wasn't even called on the play. Then the last game in Chicago I'm sure most have seen the pk goal where Pappa was basically even with the penalty kick taker but no call was made.
You hate to blame referees but when it's every single game that an egregious error is being made it just begins to spiral out of control. Schellas has said he wants a team of fighters and not complainers though so you just kind of move on and wait for your turn of the good luck."
more after the jump:
3) With both teams suffering a number of injuries, suspensions and call ups, what type of lineup and tactics do you think Schellas Hyndman and the FC Dallas staff will go with on Saturday, knowing that the FIFA break is coming up?
A) "I think Dallas will use basically the same lineup that went out there against Chicago. The biggest question mark is whether George John will be fit after coming off at halftime in Chicago with a possible concussion. There's basically backups playing in about half the positions but look for Dallas to use their familiar 4-5-1 formation with Leyva and Jackson on the wings and Blas Perez up top."
4) Bonus Question, of all the injured and suspended players, who's absence has had the biggest impact on FC Dallas during this recent rough stretch?
A) "You know it's funny because everyone will think David Ferreira or Brek Shea but we've known Ferreira would be out and Shea has been a little off form so I'll say the Brazilian Ricardo Villar. He came into 2012 on excellent form scoring the game winner in the season opener vs new York and then another goal at Kansas City. In typical MLS fashion, Villar was hacked down by Shalrie Joseph in a foul that he was suspended for retroactively for one game while Villar has not returned since early April. Lots of fairness there...
The biggest problem is without Villar there is no central attacking mid option available for Dallas and the whole dynamic of the team changes as there's no attacking punch in the middle of the pitch making Dallas a one-dimensional wing attacking team."
There you go a look inside the mind of a FC Dallas blogger, not nearly as scary as it sounds.If you want to see how I answered his questions, they should be posted over at Big D Soccer later today.
OFF MY SOAPBOX