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07/12/2007 1:34PM

Serioux ready for season MLS debut

After injury rehab and Plate games, midfielder set to go

By Steve Hunt / MLSnet.com Staff

FRISCO, Texas -- Two players on the FC Dallas roster -- striker and captain Carlos Ruiz and defender Adrian Serioux -- have MLS Cup championship rings. While Ruiz has been a regular for FCD during much of the year up top, Serioux has yet to see action against an MLS foe. But that could all change on Saturday as the Hoops travel to the nation's capital to face D.C. United.

For that game, FCD head coach Steve Morrow could start Serioux at center back. It would be his first league action since he was on the field for Houston Dynamo in the 2006 MLS Cup Final last November at Pizza Hut Park.

The Hoops acquired Serioux from Toronto FC last November and the Canadian international had knee surgery in February and has yet to see action against a league side. In the recent two-game series against Mexican Primera Division side Tigres UANL, Serioux did start both legs of the battle for the Rio Grande Plate and came through both matches well.

"He got in some extra fitness, some important match fitness," Morrow said Wednesday after Serioux played 64 minutes before coming out in the second half in the second leg. "I didn't want to push him through 90 either. It was my plan to play him for an hour."

Morrow is still mum as to whether or not Serioux will be in his starting 11 for Saturday's game with United but with fellow center back Alex Yi suffering a hamstring injury in the 1-0 loss to Tigres on Wednesday, Serioux's return becomes more likely.

"We will see how he does (Thursday in recovery) and then we'll assess him before the D.C. game at the weekend," he said. "I feel like he's getting closer. I don't want to push him too hard and want to have him fit for SuperLiga as well. I think if he had played 90 minutes, it would have been difficult for him to recover before Saturday. I was pleased with what he did and we'll check his fitness tomorrow."

Serioux is definitely chomping at the bit to return to league action.

"It's just good to be back. It doesn't really matter who we play as long as I'm on the field and just having fun. Sometimes the fun is taken out of it because it's serious business, but you kind of remember that it's just a game and take it from there," Serioux said. "I'm glad that I'm healthy and at 100 percent now."

When Morrow was named FCD's head coach last December, he said that he wanted to bring more toughness to his backline and the hard-nosed Serioux definitely fits the bill. He has spent the last five months getting to know his new teammates while also recuperating from his surgery.

"This is a great group of guys," Serioux said. "I was kind of wondering how I was going to fit in with how they started off the season. They've done well and have been sitting at the top of the table for a while now. I'm just going to try to blend in there and do what I'm known to do, which is to play tough, have some tough tackles and no red cards."

Serioux certainly wants to make his return on Saturday, but in the end, it's a decision left up to Morrow and his staff on FCD's only regular season trip to D.C. of 2007.

"When it comes down to a proper league game, you get a little more motivated in that aspect," Serioux said. "I feel good. I feel healthy. The coaches took me out to give me a little break because that's what he expects me to do come Saturday -- to go a full 90. We'll wait and see until then."

Steve Hunt is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.

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I wish Adrian all the best! I am looking forward to seeing his continued development as a central defender. If he demonstrates disciplined play (i.e. no needless fouls, safe possession passing), IMO he's in the forefront of the competition for one of the centre back spots on the MNT.

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Guest speedmonk42

Glad to hear he is back up and in the game.

Good Luck, I have enjoyed watching him play in many games.

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