There is no question FC Dallas are struggling.
After all, the team has gone six games without recording a victory. The constant lineup changes and mental errors such as red cards, suspensions and missing key opportunities have left FCD with mush for brains.
So this week, reinforcements arrived in the form of renowned sports psychologist Bill Beswick, who met with the team on Wednesday after FCD players had a venting session with technical director Fernando Clavijo and again on Thursday to discuss the terrible funk everyone has been going through.
"If I had a crystal ball when I set this up a year ago, I couldn’t have picked a better time,” FC Dallas head coach Schellas Hyndman told MLSsoccer.com “This is a point in time when you really need an expert to come in. Discipline is a choice and players make decisions. What’s been getting us in trouble is bad choices.”
Hyndman hopes Beswick will be able to rid the team of any demons that have been causing the lapses in judgment. With a very winnable game coming up on Saturday at home against Philadelphia (8:30 pm ET, watch LIVE online), the gaffer knows the importance of playing a smart and tactical match.
“The key to beating Philadelphia is to have the mindset of winning,” Hyndman said. “We have to start with 11 players and finish with 11 players.
"The guys are giving their best and they’re working so hard to win. When things don’t go their way they respond differently. They’re just getting frustrated. To beat Philadelphia, we just have to come out, know we’re at home, know we’re desperate to get a result and keep 11 players on the field no matter what occurs.”
Picking up those three points got tougher after Zach Loyd was sent off with a red card during last weekend’s loss at Columbus. Loyd will now automatically miss this game. To top it off fellow defender Ugo Ihemelu is still recovering from a concussion that will cause him to miss his third straight match.
“How many goals have we given up in the second half?" Hyndman said. "That’s where our problem has been. We have a lead. We lose a lead. They score a goal. We fight hard in the first half. We follow our tactics. The second half, what happens? There are a lot of things that enter my mind. Maybe it’s the combination of the back four. Maybe it’s the combination of not being focused and in shape or maybe it’s always finding a way to be down a man.”
The loss of those two key back line players as well as the suspension of Brek Shea does not bode well for an FC Dallas team has allowed a MLS worst 18 goals. Fifteen of those have come in the second half as FCD have surrendered five leads this season – an affliction that Hyndman and the rest of the team hope will come to an end on Saturday.