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Nico on Colorado Loss: "We didn't show up."

FC Dallas lost on the road at Colorado, a 2-1 disappointment predicated on a dismal first half. We asked Nico about the game.
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Head coaches are not always comfortable dealing with media. It’s not necessarily why they got into the business, but the job description includes it. Some coaches then are famously tight-lipped, while others try to forge a respectful relationship with reporters.

Often, coaches never share what they say to their players in the locker room. Is there a benefit to displaying dirty laundry when a squad is already struggling? Even when they are extremely disappointed with a performance, some managers choose to stay positive to the outside world, acknowledging mistakes but highlighting the good things from a match.

Hey, athletes are humans. They read the media. They listen to their coaches. If they get bashed publicly, will it motivate them to play better? Or will they get more stuck in a bad run of form?

On Saturday evening, as FC Dallas dropped yet another loss on the road to Colorado, Nico Estevez didn’t have much positive to say. While he didn’t name names or go out of his way to point fingers at his guys, his frustration and disappointment came through loud and clear on the postgame call.

I asked Nico what happened in this match, especially that first half when it seemed that FC Dallas struggled to generate any positive momentum.

“We didn’t show up,” Nico said with bluntness.

Unfortunately, these poor starts are becoming a bigger problem than just one or two bad games. How many times in recent years can we look back to games where Dallas gives up an early goal and has to claw their way back into the match? How many times has this team seemed to hesitate a bit from the opening whistle, like they want to play chess while their opponents are happy to smash and grab their way to a result?

I followed up to ask Nico what might fix this, if there is something the staff need to do differently. He did not have any answers. He acknowledged that the team has great weeks of practice where the team does exciting things. Somehow, between Friday afternoon and Saturday evening, that edge is lost.

One anonymous social media fan said, “It’s like the team is playing not to lose.”

Nico also acknowledged the frustration of bringing on subs without making any tactical changes and seeing a different energy and approach. Those same subs have started before and lacked the same kind of edge. The head coach has yet to find an answer.

The question is - how much longer does Nico have to figure things out?

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AFTERBURN SOCCER
Afterburn Soccer Show
When the lights go down, we go live. Join Nathan, Jose, Tommy, and Ismael to talk about FC Dallas action, rumors, and drama each and every week as we enjoy Major League Soccer's 2022 season together and see what Nico and the boys can do as they compete for hardware. We stream the podcast live every Monday night, so your questions might make it on air. More info at BigDSoccer.com. Also, Kings of Texas!