this isn’t an air-conditioned Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
Atlanta United travels to the Lone Star State to take on FC Dallas for a special Fourth of July fixture. For those who aren’t aware, it gets pretty darn hot in Texas during this time of year.
Frisco, the host city of FC Dallas, registered a high of 100 degrees at 5 p.m. on Tuesday. Although it won’t reach that hellish temperature on Wednesday, it’s still expected to hover around a toasty 89 degrees at the time of kickoff. Tata Martino told reporters on Tuesday that he thinks this gives Dallas a bit of an advantage at home considering they’re more used to playing matches and training in that kind of weather.
“We have to go in there knowing that they’re going to try and take advantage of the difficult climate.”
MLS mandates the use of hydration breaks if the weather measures 82 degrees or higher. The referee can, at any time, implement a “discretionary hydration break in cases in which player safety is determined to be at risk.” Each break lasts up to three minutes and is held approximately 30 minutes into each half. Sometimes these hydration breaks are welcomed by teams that are struggling to produce on the incredibly dry surface.
“If it’s necessary, we can try and take advantage of those pauses if there are things we need to correct,” said Martino. “It’s almost like a timeout in basketball.”
We’ll see if the weather impacts the Five Stripes. Someone on the team staff should make sure Brad Guzan lathers his shiny head in sunscreen.