MLS 2021: On a scale of 1-10, my baby's 26

Titans Bastard

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Right. Here's the national broadcast slate.

I'm teaching tonight, but am on break now so I checked the updates...and yeah, Orlando are not as sloppy with the ball as Atlanta. Plus, Wicky rolled out the same line up & shape as the last match, so the novelty is gone. Orlando had video to study. Maybe Wicky has some halftime adjustments? Please?
Your guys are doing a lot better than the Revs tonight, at least.
 

67YAZ

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Just finished class and saw Shuttleworth make a great reaction save to deny Urso's sick bicycle strike.

I'm in disbelief that Beric finally scored. Hopefully this gets him going.
 

67YAZ

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Offer kills the game with his first MLS goal! He's a great kid and he's made the leap from there Latvian top flight at age 20 about as well as could be hoped so far.
 

Titans Bastard

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If that’s the going rate, the Revs have roughly $460,000 in opportunity cost invested in Kizza and Mafla who have played a combined 130 minutes.
While that's totally true, it's the rare MLS team that doesn't have at least two absolute duds filling international roster slots.
 

Senator Donut

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View: https://mobile.twitter.com/GrantWahl/status/1415367132012032005?s=19


Looking forward to how this argument goes over to the owners. "Pro/Rel needed because your teams are TOO valuable."
There’s not a lot of intelligence in that Twitter account.

Also, I don’t really believe that argument that no pro/rel is the sole driver of MLS franchise values. (Obviously, relegation is not a serious threat to those top teams in Europe Grant mentioned.) Market size is an obvious factor; the Leicester metro area is smaller than Providence’s. And then of course there is the mystical hard to quantify idea that soccer is the sport of the future and on the grow here in the US.
 

Titans Bastard

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There’s not a lot of intelligence in that Twitter account.

Also, I don’t really believe that argument that no pro/rel is the sole driver of MLS franchise values. (Obviously, relegation is not a serious threat to those top teams in Europe Grant mentioned.) Market size is an obvious factor; the Leicester metro area is smaller than Providence’s. And then of course there is the mystical hard to quantify idea that soccer is the sport of the future and on the grow here in the US.
SUM factors in as well.
 

67YAZ

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Chicago-Nashville kicking off. Wicky had to make an emergency trip home to Switzerland for a family medical emergency, so Frank Klopas is in charge tonight and against DC next match. Gonna be fireworks on the sideline.

But they’re kicking off in the same 3-5-2 that has been so successful the last few matches (2 wins, a draw, and 9 goals!). No doubt, Nashville has some good video on that now.

If you want, you can compare this 3-5-2 to the USMNT system. Wicky has been training the formation off and on for 2 years now, so it’s more sophisticated than what Berhalter can run. Frankowski is a winger, so he pulls wide to the right allowing Aliseda to cut in and play in space behind Beric. Sekulic as a natural fullback sits deeper and shades inside to cover until he sees an overlap opportunity. On the other side, Herbers stays in the channel while Beric plays like a 9 and Navarro provides width. But Navarro will also underlay Herbers on occasion and Medran is given license to make late runs forward if Sekulic and Herbers both drop back. It provides a glimpse of what the much more talented USMNT could do with the formation of they stick with it.
 

67YAZ

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Gah. Holy shit. Took a shower, come back on the 18th minute and Chicago is down to 10 men and it’s 3-0 Nashville. Maybe they replace Klopas by the 20th minute….
 

Titans Bastard

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This seems very ominous for a club that just got past the dysfunction of the Frank de Boer era and was excited about the Gabriel Heinze hire.

View: https://twitter.com/DougRobersonAJC/status/1415704462983933958
Heinze is out after just 13 games.

MLS clubs have gotten a little quicker with the trigger over the years, but the Armas and Heinze firings both came very quick because there's just not much else that can be done when a coach totally loses the locker room.

View: https://twitter.com/ATLUTD/status/1416837454057848833
 

67YAZ

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Klopas takes the reigns again tonight when DC comes to town. Good god.

But Stanislov Ivanov is back to training. He’s the 22 year old Bulgarian winger who was supposed to bring real attacking thrust to the attack. I’d like to see him get 10 minutes tonight.
 

Titans Bastard

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Klopas takes the reigns again tonight when DC comes to town. Good god.

But Stanislov Ivanov is back to training. He’s the 22 year old Bulgarian winger who was supposed to bring real attacking thrust to the attack. I’d like to see him get 10 minutes tonight.
Klopas should bring enough attacking thrust all by himself.


 

67YAZ

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Ugh. Chicago gives up 2 goals in the final 10 minutes to draw with DC. The last goals was a needless PK given up by Johnny Bernstein, who has been so vital to the team in recent weeks…but a step slow here.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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Given where Miami is now, I guess the biggest surprise is they managed to make it a whole year pretending to be a forward thinking MLS team signing young South American players before becoming The Beckham Buddies Retirement Home.
 

ThePrideofShiner

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The Sounders are the first team to start five teenagers. They are also rolling out a 15-year-old.

They have 10 players out and host SKC on Sunday.
 

Titans Bastard

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The Sounders are the first team to start five teenagers. They are also rolling out a 15-year-old.

They have 10 players out and host SKC on Sunday.
Wow, you aren't kidding.

View: https://twitter.com/SoundersFC/status/1418372377516249088


Vargas (the 15 year old) and Adeniran aren't even MLS players; they are USL contract guys on short-term hardship contracts. Baker-Whiting turned 16 a few months ago, and is actually a CM! Dobbelaere is not actually a RB, and I think(?) Adeniran is not actually a CF. Good luck kids!!!

At least Atencio and Leyva have a bit more experience!
 

ninjacornelius

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Ruidiaz coming on as a second half sub is just unfair.

I’d say that Austin were a tad unlucky (73% possession!) but I can’t make excuses for this level of scoring ineptitude anymore. They lost to a bunch of children because they can’t create scoring chances. They need a true number 9 or else this is going to be a long and terrible season.
 

ninjacornelius

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I guess I'll drop this here in case there are some people looking to stock up on MLS team merch, because until the end of the month there's a promotional loophole of Punch-Drunk Love-sized proportions: buy 5 cans of Pringles, upload a picture of the receipt to the Kellogg's website, and get a $50 digital gift card to the MLS online store. It's limited to one gift card per email address, but there's theoretically no limit to the number of burner email accounts you can create. Depending on how much a can of Pringles runs in your area, it's effectively an 85% discount. I bought $300 worth of crap for a $45 investment in 30 cans of Pringles (which I donated to the food bank because fuck that's a lot of Pringles). Anyway, more details are in this Reddit thread:

https://www.reddit.com/r/MLS/comments/nj6a3a/50_mls_store_gift_card_for_buying_pringles/
 

67YAZ

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Fire have now given up 3 goals in their last 12 minutes of play. Once you go Klopas, you never back.
 

67YAZ

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Fire tie a team record for shots in a match (31) and still manage to lose 2-1.
 

Titans Bastard

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Pepi with a 50min hat trick.
Man. I love watching Pepi score goals. He's a finisher. He just has it.

Pepi's hold up and distribution game still needs work, but I've suspected that he's our best #9 prospect for a while now, and he hasn't done anything to dissuade me from holding that opinion. El Tri is coming for him though, and even though I try to keep a clear eye about the cynical "Dual Nat Game" that players play in order to secure attention / special treatment, it still makes me nervous.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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Man. I love watching Pepi score goals. He's a finisher. He just has it.

Pepi's hold up and distribution game still needs work, but I've suspected that he's our best #9 prospect for a while now, and he hasn't done anything to dissuade me from holding that opinion. El Tri is coming for him though, and even though I try to keep a clear eye about the cynical "Dual Nat Game" that players play in order to secure attention / special treatment, it still makes me nervous.
It helps that Berhalter is doing well with dual nationals, but I do still worry that we haven’t seen those results with Mexican Americans yet and that his general good instincts in this area might be running up against the federation’s general half-assedness in regards to developing and recruiting from that talent pool.
 

ThePrideofShiner

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Going to my first Sounders game since the 2019 MLS Cup tonight and they will once again be down 10 players.

Going to be a bit tougher to beat SKC with the youth then it was to beat Austin.
 

67YAZ

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Palm face emoji.
The big question the rest of this season is, what’s Beric true talent level? Was it last season’s 11 goals on high shot volume? Or this year’s “can’t hit the side of Solider Field”? If it’s the former, maybe Ivanovic plus a transfer for a proven MLS goal scoring winger gets things going (since Beric’s wages are immovable). If the latter, go all in on finding a new 9.

Aliseda is young and inconsistent finisher. Offor is younger and navigating a huge jump in league quality, though I like what I’ve seen so far. Jhon Duran arrives next season, but hard to pin your hopes on an 18 year old.
 

Titans Bastard

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ninjacornelius

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This is a big trade within MLS. Curious what other dominos may fall, both in LA and in Colorado.
Interesting. It doesn't seem like LAFC would make this kind of move unless they were freeing up money and space for a bigger player, but I think that they don't have an available DP spot right now. Maybe Rossi is on his way to Europe?
 

Titans Bastard

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The midseason moves are starting to roll in.

Inter Miami, rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic by signing old USMNT friend Ventura Alvarado, who got 13 caps in 2015 under Klinsmann, but none before or since.

View: https://twitter.com/InterMiamiCF/status/1420739214673682432


Portland signed Santiago Moreno, a winger. He's a "U22 Initiative" signing, which is a designation that means you can sign a certain number of U22 players who will have a smaller salary cap hit than their actual salary.

View: https://twitter.com/TimbersFC/status/1420776405093154818


Austin signed an attacking midfielder to a DP contract. This guy has played for River Plate and Zenit, and apparently can play a lot of attacking positions. I'm not entirely sure how Austin FC will set up with Driussi and Moussa Djitte on board, but clearly the hope is that these two guys are the attacking pieces that will push the team into the playoffs. Austin has a solid enough foundation, but obviously has badly struggled to score.

View: https://twitter.com/AustinFC/status/1420767426233479171


And it's very Rapids to pick up important building blocks (Acosta, Kaye) from around the league and also odds and ends. It's not a bad strategy given that on the aggregate GMs are undervaluing players available within MLS, though Badji in particular is just a spare part.

View: https://twitter.com/ColoradoRapids/status/1420776576258437128
 

Titans Bastard

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Houston traded $750k in GAM to LAFC for Corey Baird. LAFC continue to retool their roster in advance of their new forward signing, and possibly other stuff too. Baird wasn't getting much run for them lately, and perhaps the Dynamo can make better use of him, as he's a pretty useful MLS player.

View: https://twitter.com/HoustonDynamo/status/1421146109037191175


Austin signed McKinze Gaines, who has returned to the US after five years in Germany. He joined Wolfsburg's U19 team, then spent two years at Darmstadt where he played little except for a stint on loan at Zwickau. He was a rotational starter in the 3. Liga for Sonnenhof Großaspach for a season, then moved to Hannover where he was mostly with their reserve team in the Regionalliga during the COVID-shortened 2020-21 season.

It's an open question as to whether he'll be a contributor at the MLS level, but being from Austin helps his case to get a cheap contract with the local club.

View: https://twitter.com/AustinFC/status/1421159072473264143
 

Titans Bastard

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Atlanta is relentless. They suck, they've made a bunch of poor investments, Heinze imploded in spectacular fashion, yet they are constantly going for the jugular. Thiago Almada is supposedly a big deal Argentine prospect will probably cost something like $15m. Hopefully for Atlanta's sake he's good, as in the last few years quite a few MLS teams (including Atlanta) have been bamboozled by Latin American clubs and agents into overpaying for players.

View: https://twitter.com/FabrizioRomano/status/1421976223777972226
 

67YAZ

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This is why you have one poor schmuck lay behind the wall.


But Chicago managed a road point in Philly. That’s good right now.
 

DJnVa

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Got an Austin FC jersey today to use as my keeper jersey for indoor.

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