Bryan Leyva’s start this last Saturday was rather historic, even if only for FC Dallas, its youth development system and fans of the club who are eager to see the club develop talent for the future.

Leyva is the first Homegrown player signed by Dallas to a professional contract, having joined Dallas’ youth development system back in June 2008. He was eventually signed to a professional contract in 2009, and made his MLS debut in a loss to the LA Galaxy in 2010. But Saturday he finally got his nod in Schellas’ starting lineup.

Leyva started in place of Fabian Castillo, who was injured, and instantly had an effect on the game: as Carlos Rodriguez’s long cross skipped past Rodney Wallace, Leyva took a first touch shot on goal that was pushed away by Perkins, only to allow Blas Pérez to mop it up for his first goal in a Hoops jersey. It was a wonderful early goal and though Leyva won’t be credited on the scoresheet with an assist, it is clear to anyone who sees that highlight that Leyva created the goal.

Despite being subbed off early, Leyva had a good game. His only shot on goal resulted in a goal and completed all but a couple of his passes before being taken off for tactical reasons by Schellas. Make no mistake though: we’ll probably be seeing Leyva in the lineup again as the season goes on.

George John, the sole substitute brought on in place of Leyva, also had a good game, as did most of the defense, barring the defensive flub that led to Portland’s goal. Following an admittedly weak clearance by Hartman, the ball came down on Daniel Hernandez’s foot and rocketed backwards towards the Dallas goal, practically serving the goal up on a silver platter for Darlington Nagbe who gladly tied things up.

Despite the glaring defensive error that led to the goal, Dallas looked good in the first half and had a deserved lead. It was in the second half that they really began to look a little sloppy, partially indicated by their 75% passing completion rate. A nice stat that jumps out is duels won: as mentioned by the commentators in the first half of the match, Dallas was winning duels (56% for the entire match) and that really helped them keep Portland from putting too many attacks together initially.

Overall, it was a pretty good match for Dallas, though they’ll feel they should’ve gotten three points, and really? They should’ve.

In Other News

Carlos Rodriquez has been called up for Panama’s Olympic U-23 squad. He joins the ever so lovely Brek Shea and Brek’s Fabulous Hair as the only Hoops players to be called up for this year’s Olympics thus far.

Rodriguez must have impressed Schellas in the season opener when he was subbed on, earning himself a start against Portland, where he helped set up Pérez’s goal. It’s good to see players like him and Pertúz who are new to the team come in and perform admirably this early in the season.

And finally, Dallas put out a nice little video this week where each of the squad talked a bit about their favorite movies. In short, we learn that:

  • Kevin Hartman really liked Last of the Mohicans, as well as documentaries.
  • Most of the guys enjoyed Safe House
  • Brek Shea really loved Planet of the Apes. He says he “really likes the apes”.

But the best part of the video? Bobby Warshaw sheepishly admitting he’s a Ryan Gosling fan! Can Bobby be any more adorable? I don’t think so.