December 11, 2018 at 2:13 pm #30426
Orange and Blue PressMember
What Do You Think about FC Cincinnati’s Draft Picks?
Kei Kamara – traded to Colorado Rapids
Greg Garza also acquired in trade for TAM/GAM
For information on who was selected….see our up to date draft article here:
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Just going to be giving an immediate reaction. If you know me, you’ll know I’ll research these players for about 3 days.
Pros – FCC got two defenders that I’m excited about, Ndam and Garza. In 2-3 years time, Lasso and Ndam could be a fearsome CB pairing in their prime. Also I’m glad we addressed at least one fullback position, where most people agreed we need help. Garza should be solid obviously. Glad Kamara is not being acquired, I hope we’re on the transfer market for any additional strikers.I understand we traded Kamara for an international roster spot which seems needed, especially given the current roster players we retained. Lamah I like, he’s expensive but creative players are. I watched him a lot at FC Dallas, consistency is at times and issue, but I like the player.
Cons – We used up a couple more international spots, and we’re burning through them at an alarming rate. I also hoped we’d go for a bit more youth. Outside of Ndam, the youngest player acquired today is 27. Since it doesn’t seem like we’re going to be big spenders, I think we soon need to re-focus our approach to be one of acquiring young players and developing them. That seems like the path forward.
Mattocks and Alexander are not players I know that well, so I’ll have to do more research. Mattocks lost his starting role when Rooney arrived but 10 goals from 25 appearances in 2018 isn’t bad. Alexander I just don’t know well aside from the fact that he’s a veteran central midfielder that’s been around the league for a while.
Overall, mixed feelings. I feel better about the roster overall now that we have more players and experience, we still have a lot of work to do and the acquisitions on the transfer market are going to be huge for our potential 2019 success in the league.December 12, 2018 at 12:07 pm #30481
Speaking from the standpoint of the defense, I like what FCC has constructed. Waston and Garza are great for both experience in MLS and giving support to Ndam, Lasso, and anyone we may end up drafting on defense. I feel that it will also help Richey in his development, as I think the strong defense ahead of him last year gave him confidence. I do worry about the right side; Hoyte’s played a lot of minutes the past year.
I also worry about the net itself. No solid GK in place yet.
The midfield needs that CDM next to Alashe. Let’s hope the Ulloa deal works.
I never realized just how much experience Alexander brings to the squad, but he’s played very sparingly the past two years. Tore a ligament in 2017 that shelved him for four months. I could see him filling the middle, but if he flounders, I’m not sure if Nazmi can pull the load. TBD.
Lamah had a very good 2017 and first half of 2018. Played sparingly in the second half of 2018. Lots of heavy lifting in the LW. Maybe he turns out to be the player we thought Laing would be. Could be good for 10 goals next year.
As much as people may wonder about Mattocks alongside Adi, he actually had his best season last year before Rooney came in. 8 goals in the first 14 games (and many were on the road). Once Rooney was in, though, his numbers dwindled. 1008 minutes in the first 14 games (2W-7L-5D), 259 in the last 21 (12W-4L-5D). Granted, a few of those were due to international duty, but he played all of 18 minutes from October on. I want to give him the benefit of the doubt and try him alongside Adi to see what that produces.December 12, 2018 at 12:55 pm #30482
My reaction improved as the day continued and additional player news via trades was made known.
To preface my comments, I need to dial the clock back to Monday. The announcements of the five additional players from the USL roster really made me pause and wonder what FCCs strategy was going into the Expansion Draft. Eleven spots were spoken for before the draft, with minimal MLS or top level experience, and many positional holes. I felt like we were returning 3 players too many.
Listening live to the five Expansion Draft picks as I was de-planing a flight I was not yet warming up to the bigger play. Honestly, the 5 picks by themselves don’t really do much for me.
As a long time DC United and USMNT fan, I’m aware of Mattocks, his speed and direct style of play, but also cognizant of his limitations and past experience playing with Adi in Portland. So my reaction to the first pick was meh. The second pick was Kei and thankfully it was quickly followed by the fact that we were trading him to the Rapids for a coveted Intl spot. Good move though feel like we should have also received considerable TAM & GAM in the deal too.
Not being all that aware of Lamah and Alexander, I kept walking to the rental car booth wondering what would come of FCCs first year in MLS. Expecting to hear a keeper announced in the fifth spot, I was happy to hear Ndam’s name called but still wondering out loud.
Then the other cleat dropped…the trades, woven in like a brilliant tapestry to fill the gaps. First, a personal favorite, Garza was announced and will fill a big role at LB (had him listed in my pre draft prep before the unprotected players were known). Then Waston, a long time USMNT nemesis, was added to bring experience and leadership to the young center back duo of Lasso and Ndam. In two strokes the tide was turning.
Now hearing a CDM like Ulloa may be on his way via a trade with FCD, in addition to Powell at RB from Portland, and the once hazy Roster started to shine. There are still a few gaps to fill, a keeper, and possibly another CB, but I do think FCC will be competitive next season. Its been a crazy few days!December 12, 2018 at 1:44 pm #30486
With Ulloa and possibly Powell added to that list, I love how our defense could look. Flesh that out with a little more offense up front, and I think we’re ahead of where Minnesota was when they entered.