Consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, and also the virtue of champions. Young teams in any sport tend to lack consistency, while veterans -- those who've been through the grind year after year after year -- generally know how to bring it.
FC Dallas, however, kind of turned that notion on its ear in 2015. There is this:
And yes, a five-game winning streak is nifty. More telling, though, is that it was one of three unbeaten streaks of at least five games this team put together last season. Dallas had a few glitches, including a three-game mid-summer losing streak with Mauro Diaz out injured that cost them the Supporters' Shield. But by and large last year's group of kids in Frisco avoided the types of prolonged nose-dives that cost teams points and position in the standings.
They are kids no longer. Diaz, Fabian Castillo, Matt Hedges, Victor Ulloa, Kellyn Acosta et al are MLS veterans at this point, used to competing on multiple fronts on various surfaces, in various climates and at various altitudes. Age, for all of them, is just a number.
So I expect Dallas to be even better and even more consistent in 2016. Yes, there is still the issue of finding a functional target forward to fill Blas Perez's minutes, but even without that they look, to me, like the best team (on paper) heading into the regular season.
This is the 13th in a daily series counting down to to the MLS regular season first kick on March 6. I'm using Paul Carr's tweets (with his blessing) to examine some of the bigger storylines to follow in the upcoming season.
- 18 days outExamining David Villa's role for NYCFC
- 17 days outCan Larin replicate his rookie year heroics?
- 16 days outA new spot and new concerns for Giovinco
- 15 days outNew start begins at the back for Chicago
- 14 days out Sporting can create, but who'll finish?
- 13 days outYoung-at-the-back Union flipping the script
- 12 days outJaviMo squares off against Father Time
- 11 days outDrogba's magic, but Impact need a Plan B
- 10 days outRevs need to find Fagundez at the back post
- 9 days outFundamental things still apply for No. 9s
- 8 days outNew role is an old spot for Seattle's Deuce
- 7 days outThe Wall of the Wasatch guards Rio Tinto