Preseason officially started this morning in Frisco after an offseason lengthened by the renegotiation of the collective bargaining agreement for Major League Soccer.
Wednesday, March 3 marked the beginning of voluntary sessions at Toyota Soccer Center – two days after the league-wide start date – ahead of an April 17 start to Dallas’ 26th season. Players began reporting on February 22 for a league-required quarantine prior to physical exams and group training.
“These next few days are what we feel are fundamental days, base days,” said Luchi Gonzalez in his opening press conference. “Create a base terms of fitness, create a base in terms of technique, create a base in terms of simple fundamental tactical things and priorities in terms of playing forward supporting vertical passes, positioning things and creating some objectives. Simple fundamental objectives.”
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, FC Dallas is keeping its preseason camp in North Texas with three scrimmages planned. An intrasquad scrimmage will take place on Saturday, March 13 at Toyota Soccer Center. The FCD practice facility will host USL Championship side OKC Energy once again a week later on the 20th. Preparation will then move over Lamar Hunt Way into Toyota Stadium for a visit from Austin Bold on Wednesday, March 24.
At this time, media and fans will not be permitted to the three scrimmages, and no information has been provided as far as streaming the games.
We’ve seen FC Dallas’ offseason signings trickle in as both new and existing players who spend their offseason outside the United States deal with procedures for entering the country.
“There’s there’s been some challenges with the consulates and embassies in the visa process,” said Gonzalez. “So different international guys are getting into town at different times. It’s different for every club, different for every country.”
While the new signings have reported, only three of the team’s five draftees from the 2021 MLS SuperDraft will report to camp.
Nicky Hernandez, Colin Shutler and Thibaut Jacquel will join new signings Jader Obrian, Jose Martinez, Freddy Vargas, and Kalil El Medkhar. Mark Salas and Giovanni Montesdeoca will remain with the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill until May.
Three players are missing a large portion of preseason in order to prepare for the USA’s hopeful return to men’s Olympic soccer. Jesus Ferreira, Ricardo Pepi, and Tanner Tessmann are attending the U-23 USMNT camp ahead of the Olympic qualifying tournament in Guadalajara.