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FC Dallas Draft Preview: MLS-ready talent a must for FCD

MLSsoccer.com begins its team-by-team lookahead at the 2013 SuperDraft and the players that will most likely be on each club’s radar.

Any time your star player hits 30, you know your window for success is closing. In Dallas, David Ferreira will hit 34 this year. So the window’s damn near shut.

It’s probably “win or rebuild” time for Schellas Hyndman in 2013, which means he has to make the most out of his draft picks. There’ll be no “projects” selected this year – just the most MLS-ready guys at positions of need.

FC Dallas SuperDraft Picks: #7 (1st Rnd), #20 (2nd Rnd)

FC Dallas Depth Chart (24-man roster):

Goalkeepers (3): Raul Fernandez, Chris Seitz, Richard Sanchez

Right Backs (3): Zach Loyd, London Woodberry, Kellyn Acosta

Central Defenders (4): George John, Matt Hedges, Stephen Keel, Ugo Ihemelu

Left Backs (1): Jair Benítez

Defensive Midfielders (3): Peter Luccin, Bobby Warshaw, James Marcelin

Center Midfielders (1): Andrew Jacobson

Playmakers (2): David Ferreira, Ricardo Villar

Wingers (3): Jackson, Fabián Castillo, Brek Shea

Second Forward (2): Pipico, Jonathan Top

Forwards (2): Blas Pérez, Bradlee Baladez

International Slots (6 of 8 used): Pipico, Fernandez, Castillo, Jackson, Pérez, Marcelin

FC Dallas SuperDraft Priorities:

Ferreira’s the key. If he’s healthy and fit, they pretty much have to go with the 4-4-1-1 formation, with him playing underneath Pérez. And you’re not going to replicate his talent via the draft.

If he’s out, they play the 4-4-2 – which is why Pipico and Top are listed separately. Oh, and Luccin – the presumptive starting d-mid – has played seven games in the past three years. Either way, they need help now:

1. MLS-Ready Midfield – As we’ve said: The window is closing. Hyndman scored a golazo with the Matt Hedges pick last year, and needs another impact player this time through. Getting someone who can push Jacobson for playing time makes the most sense.

Wish List: Dillon Powers (Notre Dame), John Stertzer (Maryland)

2. Winged Depth – Don’t expect Shea to be ready to start the season, which means the oft-injured Castillo and the oft-suspended Jackson are the only true wingers on the roster. That needs to be addressed – perhaps as early as No. 7, but definitely at No. 20.

Wish List: J.J. Johnson (VCU), Blake Smith (New Mexico), Erik Hurtado (Santa Clara), Donnie Smith (UNC Charlotte), Ryan Hollingshead (UCLA)

3. A Rest For Jair – Benítez has been an “every minute, every game” kind of player (when he’s not getting red cards). But he’s now 34, and expecting another full, injury-free season just doesn’t make sense. A true left back to give him some rest, and take his spot next season, should be somewhere on the list.

Wish List: Jimmy Nealis (Georgetown), Greg Cochrane (Louisville), Dylan Remick (Brown)