Shea's shift spurs FC Dallas to 2-0 win over Chivas
The lights were back on at Pizza Hut Park in 2011 as FC Dallas beat Chivas USA 2-0 in their final preseason game behind goals from Daniel Hernandez and Ruben Luna.
Overall, head coach Schellas Hyndman left the preseason game, a charity match supporting the FC Dallas Foundation and Kids Across America, impressed with his team but aware of one drastic lineup change.
“I was pleased with the things that we tried to do. I think you saw a lot of similarity with the things we did last year,” said Hyndman. “As far as trying to keep possession and move the ball, what you saw was a little bit different with Brek Shea.”
“A little bit different with Brek Shea” means moving the natural left-sided midfielder to left center back to fill the hole left open from backline injuries to Ugo Ihemelu and George John.
“I have to do what the boss says and I like playing there to be honest,” said Shea.
While John started and played 86 minutes, Ihemelu is currently recovering from sports hernia surgery and Hyndman says the veteran won’t be ready for another 2-3 weeks.
In 2011, seeing Shea on defense is something that the FC Dallas faithful should get accustomed to.
“I think Brek is an extremely talented player,” said Hyndman. “I think for him to take that next step to where he hopes he can go - whether it’s a starting position for the national team, whether it’s an opportunity for him to go to Europe - I think he’s a better center back than he is a left-sided player.”
When asked if Shea will start at left center back to begin the 2011 campaign next week against the Chicago Fire, Hyndman responded, “I hope so.”
“I like attacking so hopefully I can be a center back that can thread balls to the midfield which a lot of teams lack,” said Shea. “I could be a midfielder playing center back but I also know that my first role is to defend.”
Another player who has impressed the FC Dallas coaching staff is Honduran midfielder Marvin Chavez.
Chavez continually used his speed and a combination of step-overs to cause trouble for Chivas USA left back Ante Jazic.
Coach Hyndman keyed in on one particular moment from 2010 when Chavez turned the corner.
“When we played Kansas City (on September 25), he got the start, and he scored a goal,” said Hyndman. “From that moment on I thought he kept getting better and better. Right now he’s one of the top players playing for us.”
However, the FC Dallas roster, with only one week left in preseason is still not quite set and ready.
Hyndman admitted that Shea’s center back partner, George John - recently back from ankle surgery - made some mistakes in a performance that was unlike those typically submitted by the third-year back from the University of Washington.
Furthermore, the team still plans on signing one more player, either a defender or a forward who has been in preseason training with the team.
“We are still going to sign one more player, and then we have (Fabian) Castillo coming so we are only going to get better with time,” said Hyndman.