Sure, the 2012 regular season is only three games old, but already one thing is painfully apparent, that opposing teams are trying to take both Ricardo Villar and Blas Perez out of the game. Maybe take them out of the game is a bit harsh but New York, Portland and Sporting Kansas City have all made a concerted effort to get physical with both FCD’s starting No. 10 and their talented striker from Panama.
In no game was this more vivid than in Sunday’s 2-1 loss in Kansas City, especially in the first half. In the 32nd minute, Perez took an elbow to the kidney from Sporting’s Aurelein Collin. That incident was followed four minutes later by a hard challenge by Chase Myers on Villar, a play that sent him off the field via stretcher and made him unable to play after halftime.
FCD head coach Schellas Hyndman was clearly less than pleased with both fouls on two of his most important players.
“You look at our game out here against Portland. The first seven minutes of the game, Villar took a lot of hits. Any one of those hits could put him out. Collin comes in and crashes into Blas and how much is he really trying to play the ball when his arm goes right into Blas’ kidney? And then what does he do right away? Hold his head,” Hyndman said. “It’s almost an insult that you’re trying to pull that crap, but again it’s up to the referee and I think if I remember right, he probably got a yellow card on that.”
He also weighed in on the Myers challenge on Villar.
“There’s a fine line and Myers got a yellow card on Villar but Villar’s out. He might be out for the next week. He might be out for a month. Ribs are very difficult but it’s like man, if you look at one similarity, both of those fouls happened at the center line,” Hyndman said. “Like what, he’s going to turn around and shoot? Those are needless fouls but they can be damaging and even Myers throws an elbow into him.”
And maybe what is most disconcerting to the FCD coach is the fact that with the way the rules read, either or both of those challenges were definite grounds for ejection.
“The way the rules read, striking or attempting to strike is a red card. Striking or attempting to strike, well he [Collin] threw his arm right into his [Perez’s] kidney, that’s a strike. One of the most dangerous weapons in a person’s body is not the fist. It’s not the foot. It’s the elbow because you’re coming in with a point. That’s a strike,” Hyndman said.
But those two fouls which earned yellow cards were only two examples of a match where the referee lost control early on.
“I think the referee has a feel of the game, but it’s just the intimidation. You’re on the road. You’ve got the fans. You’ve got the bickering of the players. Any call that was made [against KC] it was like, are you kidding me? And I’m on the other side saying it’s about time. You look at a number of times we’re fouled in the middle third, if the foul’s not called then we turn the ball over,” Hyndman said. “Now we’re trying to get out of the middle third and we’re trying to get out of the center of the middle third and that’s what we’ve got to do better.”