Fate has dealt the players and coaching staff of FC Dallas a stiff challenge on the eve of the 2016 playoffs.
Surgery was performed Wednesday to repair a torn Achilles tendon in the right leg of playmaker Mauro Diaz, a member of the team since July, 2013. Dr. Robert Anderson of OrthoCarolina in Charlotte conducted the procedure that rues Diaz out for the rest of 2016 and possibly much of 2017 as well.
Diaz, 25, is third in MLS with 13 assists, a career high, and has also scored five goals. He suffered the injury in the final minutes of a 2-1 defeat of Seattle on Sunday. FCD (17-8-8, 59 points) leads the Western Conference and can clinch a second straight conference title as well as the Supporters’ Shield by getting at least a tie against the Galaxy Sunday at StubHub Center.
FCD won the U.S. Open Cup last month. The Supporters’ Shield, which goes to the team with the best regular-season record, is the second part of a possible treble that would include the team’s first MLS Cup title. The MLS Cup final, which FCD could host, will be played Dec. 10.
In 78 MLS games, Diaz has scored 19 goals and 28 assists. FCD is 3-1-2 this season in games that he has missed, and has veterans such as Mauro Rosales to handle the duties left by this latest setback.