At 3rd Degree, we always have a depth chart in our features for both FC Dallas and North Texas Soccer Club, but with camps around the corner, I thought it might be worth a dive into some roster specifics on the defending USL-1 Champions.
I think you will see there are a few gaps that need plugging and I imagine that will happen in spring camp.
But for now, let’s look at where Los Toritos are before any changes happen.
Players Signed to North Texas SC
Striker – Ronaldo Damus
Forward/wing – Alex Bruce
Left wing – Arturo Rodriguez
Right wing – Oscar Romero
10/8 – David Rodriguez
8/6 – Imanol Almaguer
Center back – Brecc Evans
Goalkeeper – Carlos Avilez
Yup, eight players. That’s it.
Plus a few of these guys might get a shot to move up to MLS.
You can see the problem here, what happens when no FCD players and no U19s are available? It gets really ugly, really fast. North Texas at this point can’t even field 11 players. They will have to sign some bodies.
Note: obviously any FC Dallas SuperDraft picks are likely going to end up getting offers for spots on the NTX roster. So far, however, that’s not an offer pics have chosen to take.
FC Dallas Players Loaned Down
Obviously, part of the importance of NTXSC is the ability for FC Dallas to loan players down to get minutes. Although that happens much more at home than on the road.
So who might get loaned down in 2020? Many of the same players as 2019 actually.
Now, FCD did jettison some older, expensive players. So there will be more playing time for youth in MLS. Still, some of these guys may still get NTXSC time.
Forward – Ricardo Pepi
Wing – Dante Sealy
10/8 – Thomas Roberts
6 – Edwin Cerrillo
Right back – Bryan Reynolds
Center back – Callum Montgomery
Left/Right back – Eddie Munjoma (I’m hoping that FCD signs him)
There are a bunch more players that might see time – Jacori Hayes, Francis Atuahene, Ema Twumasi, Johnny Nelson, Jimmy Maurer, and Kyle Zobeck – but the six players listed above are the players I can see as frequently being loaned down.
The NTX depth chart is getting better but isn’t there yet.
Academy Kids Playing Up
Lastly, of course, are the players who will come up form the U19s and U17s. I’m going to list guys who got minutes last year and have at least gotten some training time with NTXSC.
Many of these guys might only be available till mid-July, after that they will head to college if they are not signed to USL-1 contract. Four of the six players who have turned down NTX deals are on this list. I’ll list any college commits I know about.
Wing – Beni Redzic – has another season as a U19 to go
Wing/10/8 – Gibran Rayo – unknown
10/8/6 – Tanner Tessmann – Clemson
8 – Cesar Garcia – unknown
Left back – Jonathan Gomez – FCD U17, graduates high school in May of 2022.
Center back – Nico Carrera – Louisville
Goalkeeper – Seth Wilson – Clemson
Goalkeeper – Zach Schawl – Central Arkansas
You can see that center back and holding mid are problems. Almaguer can play as a 6 but is really more of an 8. I still think FCD should look at Tessmann as a center back and he too can 6 if needed.
One more solution at center back might be SMU senior center back Philip Ponder. Although he is eligible, I don’t think he’s worth a Homegrown deal. But I’d like to see him with North Texas if he will take a USL-1 contract.
“Normal” First XI
So right now here’s how I see the day to day first XI for North Texas SC – until mid-July anyway – without FC Dallas loan downs. It’s more of a 4-2-3-1 look until they decide if either Almaguer or Tessmann is going to play as a pure 6.
I’m really looking forward to camp.