It’s now two months since I first wrote up the state of the FCD Roster for 2023 and just over a month since we did a check-in. So let’s see how things are looking for FC Dallas now as camp opens.
As a reminder, all of this is about basic roster construction. Ideas on how FC Dallas might actually improve the team overall are in a different article or podcast.
FC Dallas Roster Construction 2023
I’ve used the same model for a couple of years now with 30 roster slots. It’s basically a 2-deep with an extra attacker, an extra center back, plus five open versatile spots.
|Roster Slot||Position||Start of ’23 Offseason||Now (Camp Opening)|
|2||9||Franco Jara||Vet backup 9.|
|3||9||Young reserve||Jose Mulato|
|9||Free-8||U-22 initiative?||Young’ish player ideally.|
|15||LB||Isaiah Parker?||Isaiah Parker?|
|16||CB||Starter caliber signing.||Starter caliber signing.|
|19||CB||Veteran depth||Sebastien Ibeagha|
|20||CB||Young reserve||Amet Korça|
Thoughts, Questions, and Needs
- Who will occupy the final four extra spots is still up for grabs as there is much more flexibility in those positions these days due to short and long-term loans.
- Dante Sealy and Justin Che remain on loan. Both players’ loans expire in June of this season. Sealy is much more likely to return than Che.
- There are four draft picks in camp: Herbert Endeley (24th overall, Indiana University), Ryan Wittenbrink (53rd overall, Indiana University), Kameron Lacey (82nd overall, UNC Charlotte), and Holland Rula (3rd round of 2022 draft). It may be difficult for any of them to make the FCD roster.
- I anticipate that Nolan Norris and Tarik Scott will spend most, if not all, of 2023 with North Texas SC. So I am not counting them as locked in my working roster (see above question marks) until either proves they aren’t on a season-long loan to MLS Next Pro.
- Don’t read too much into my choice to list Brandon Servania in the linking-8 position and Tsiki Ntsabeleng as “extra” as both players are pretty equal on the depth chart behind Paxton Pomykal.
- I do not see either Servania or Ntsabeleng as a legit backup to Sebastian Lletget. This was Thomas Robert‘s spot, FCD needs to replace Roberts. In the end, it may be that they go with the four 8s they have now. It’s not ideal in my mind, but Pomykal can fill in there if necessary.
- Based on his career, Sebastien Ibeagha replaces Matt Hedges as the projected veteran depth piece in the build. Spring may tell us differently. Can he challenge to take a starting spot?
- Last but not least, my take is that FCD still needs a top-line center back or at least someone capable of pushing Jose Martinez and Nkosi Tafari. It may take will the summer window.