Houston Dynamo: Picault brings offensive show to the home pitch

Houston Dynamo, Fafa Picault (Photo by Omar Vega/Getty Images)
Houston Dynamo, Fafa Picault (Photo by Omar Vega/Getty Images) /

Midfielder Fafa Picault joins the Houston Dynamo with still-growing career potential.

Houston Dynamo has kept two open Designated Player spots in the team’s pocket. For now, the team adds midfielder Fabrice-Jean Fafa Picault. He’s a player in a career with the best yet to come. He’s been effective for FC Dallas on the left-wing of a formation favored by the Houston team.

He’s not yet the superstar Dynamo supporters have been demanding since the team fell out of the MLS championship hunt. Houston Dynamo acquired Picault from FC Dallas in a trade for General Allocation Money. Dallas gets more if Picault meets the performance metrics expected by Houston.

Picault scored three goals and two assists in 18 games for Dallas. He started in both their 2020 playoff games. But that’s not where he caught the Dynamo organization’s eye. His highest-rated game of the season was working out of a 4-2-3-1 formation against Houston Dynamo. He scored two of his three goals of the season in that 3-0 shutout.

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Not known for tackles, he got in two during the match. He also won three aerials and got credited with six dribbles. His two shots for the game both scored. Dynamo brass thinks Picault has reached the prime of his career. They praise his versatility on the wing, plus quality and speed.

Although 29 years of age, he actually has room for development that he on which he shows promise in cashing in.

He went pro in 2012 with the NASL Tampa Bay Rowdies. He also played for Bundesliga side St. Pauli, Czech first-division team AC Sparta Prague and the Fort Lauderdale Strikers.

He also scored 21 goals, 12 assists in 89 appearances with Philadelphia Union.

With Picault on the pitch, expect Dynamo head coach Tab Ramos to continue focus on the 4-3-3 for his team. He’ll keep Picault on the left, where he was previously using midfielder Ariel Lassiter.

That allows Ramos to move Lassiter to the center or use him in his more natural position of forward. The club had expected him to prove a valuable attacking piece. The club needs Picault to maintain his strength in dribbling and through balls.

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Previous scouting reports noted a weakness of Picault in offside awareness. He only had three called on him last season. He didn’t get caught at all during his banner game against Houston. So if he makes good on the scoring, he’ll pave the way for the one – maybe two  — superstars that Houston Dynamo supporters keep hoping for.