This topic contains 7 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by Nino 4 days, 21 hours ago.
November 20, 2018 at 9:06 am #30111
Orange and Blue PressMember
Now that possible player departure news is starting to drip in, and some of our favorite players may not be returning, what positional focus will FC Cincinnati take in the upcoming Expansion Draft (contingent on player pool availability)?
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O&B Press staff will comment here and we encourage you to as well or share your comments with us on your preferred social media platform.November 20, 2018 at 9:39 am #30114
A lot depends on which players current MLS teams leave unprotected. I’d take an approach where you look for the best 5 players available. However, we do have strengths on the existing roster, mostly down the spine of the team.
Based on that, I’d be looking for players on the edges – fullbacks and wingers. I’d also have an eye out for a goalkeeper. Right now I’m assuming we’ll take one of our current keepers to MLS. LAFC got a starting GK in the first round of the expansion draft last year and FCC could too, but it just depends on who’s out there. The list of eligible players will be released the day prior to the draft (Dec 10).November 20, 2018 at 11:25 am #30124
FCC needs to not only pick up players that will contribute on the field, they will need to make sure they fit the locker-room and even make it better. From team first mentality to embracing the city. Saying that, here are positions that need to be addressed and names to look into.
GOALKEEPER – Even with Spencer Richey or Evan Newton signing, they need to upgrade with more MLS experience. Two names are Matt Lampson (MN United) and Ryan Meara (NY Red Bull). Both have the MLS experience and have played in Nippert. Darkhorse would be Steph Cleveland (Chicago Fire). He lacks a lot of gametime, but did perform well towards the end of the season. Also from the Dayton area.
DEFENDER – A proven centerback is key to early success. This might be a player from Europe, but Matt Hedges (FC Dallas) would be a terrific option. Coach just left and he is from Indianapolis. Tim Parker (NY Red Bull) is another proven winner that would bring the fight everyone expects from the orange and blue.
MIDFIELD – You will spend money here for a top player, so finding a player to impact the team may prove a little more difficult in the expansion draft. You will look for attributes of toughness, ball winner, experience here. Leave the flair for DP level signing or foreign signing. Andrew Wenger (Houston Dynamo) would be a great get. Tons of MLS experience and can play in the back as well. A tough minded player that has grinded in the league, successfully, for many seasons. Thomas McNamara (NYCFC) is a gritty player that can spark a team. Only question here is does FCC already have players like him.
FORWARD – Probably the most difficult position to find anytime, but especially in an expansion draft. Either gamble on a young player or look for a guy that has done it and might need a new scene to rekindle his goals.
If players are not available that fit what FCC wants, do not hesitate to make trades for $ (TAM) or otherwise.November 20, 2018 at 1:49 pm #30125
I’m less inclined to focus on positions and more willing to go after best available talent – whatever that entails. Drafting for a specific position might mean sacrificing quality, and given our roster is basically a free-for-all at this point, it’d be a bit silly to start limiting ourselves already. BPA is a proven method. Even if they don’t fit our squad, they could be a worthwhile trade asset to get someone we could use.November 20, 2018 at 2:12 pm #30126
If a highly rated talent is available the club will certainly grab him. The main focus should be picking up 5 players that can either see immediate playing time at a moderate price tag or help bundle several players in a trade for a more significant move (similar to LAFC last season).
As it’s unlikely we’ll find quality A forwards and central attacking mids in the Expansion Draft, I feel like the club will desire to select a MLS-proven keeper, central defender, outside backs and wingers in a few weeks. This approach also aligns with the several players already under contract or rumored to be close to contracts.
Happy selecting FCC!November 20, 2018 at 4:26 pm #30129
Good comment about the locker room Reid. Not many people talking about that, but Koch brings it up “character” almost every time he talks about roster movesNovember 20, 2018 at 6:13 pm #30130
Reid, great post. I couldn’t agree more with your comments.
Would love to see Matt Hedges and Andrew Wenger type players in Orange & Blue! Trades for TAM dollars are also extremely valuable as we move forward. Many levers we can pull to make the MLS roster work.December 5, 2018 at 11:22 pm #30275
From what I’ve gathered in the past few weeks I wouldn’t be surprised if FCC takes a strong defensive approach going into MLS. Bring tough to score on keeps you in games.
I’d expect a keeper, and a CB at a minimum. It also wouldn’t surprise me if we traded a pick