Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
DeRo heads myriad versions of attacking mids
by Ridge Mahoney, December 8th, 2011 2:36AM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ
TAGS:  mls

MOST COMMENTED

[BEST OF MLS 2011: Attacking midfielders] The third installment of Soccer America’s 2011 Positional Rankings puts the spotlight on attacking midfielders, and league MVP Dwayne De Rosario’s remarkable season earns him top spot.

SA's Top 10 Attacking Midfielders
1. Dwayne De Rosario (D.C. United)
2. Mauro Rosales (Seattle)
3. Brad Davis (Houston)
4. David Beckham (Los Angeles)
5. Nick LaBrocca (Chivas USA)
6. Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
7. Davide Chiumiento (Vancouver)
8. Marco Pappa (Chicago)
9. Benny Feilhaber (New England)
10. Simon Dawkins (San Jose)

The classification of attacking midfielder is not limited to players who are deployed centrally, and in a few cases is assigned arbitrarily to those who were deployed in different spots during the season. Some attacking mids are playmakers looking to pass, others prefer to attack directly, i.e., shoot.

Some, like Dwayne De Rosario, do a lot of both. He not only played up top and out wide in addition to attacking mid, he started the season in Toronto and played briefly for the Red Bulls before yet another trade sent him to D.C. United, which leaned heavily on his prowess after another creative influence, Chris Pontuis, went down with an injury.

Players who often take up wide positions yet carry the brunt of their team’s attacking impetus – Mauro Rosales, Brad Davis, Davide Chiumiento, Marco Pappa – have been put in this category rather than as flank midfielders. This is far from a perfect system and in a fluid sport such as soccer such designations will never fit every player snugly, but more importantly, they define a role within a team, not a specific, rigid position on the field.

Because a broken leg limited him to 10 regular season games, RSL playmaker Javier Morales – without question one of the league’s best – is excluded from this year’s rankings. So, too, is FC Dallas catalyst David Ferreira (six games).

During his 11-year MLS career, De Rosario has been called a midfielder playing up top as well as a forward deployed in midfield. He’s all of that and in 2011, scored an impressive array of amazing goals. Seldom has a player been as equally dangerous going for goal as while setting up a chance, as his 16 goals and 12 assists attest.

Rosales finished among the league leaders with 13 assists and his late-season absences due to a sprained MCL greatly hampered the Sounders’ attack. Davis floated inside from his customary spot on the left side notch a league-high 16 assists and without him in the title game Houston didn’t get much going offensively. David Beckham’s unerring deliveries on set plays were accompanied by some great passing displays as he totaled 15 regular-season assists and four more in the playoffs. Nick LaBrocca tailed off in the last two months of the season yet there in some games he outshone everyone else on the field.

Graham Zusi played at the advanced point of a three-man midfield triangle and while doing a fair share of defensive work funneled the ball efficiently to SKC’s attacking tridente. Chiumiento labored through some cold spells while also bedazzling the opposition on his way to nine assists. Pappa played on both flanks and in the middle as a goal-threatening catalyst who scored eight times.

Benny Feilhaber
came to MLS in hopes of reviving his national-team career and while influential at times, his decent numbers (23 games, four goals, seven assists) were a product of inconsistency as well as a sputtering team.

The Quakes sorely need to retain the clever and incisive forays of Simon Dawkins after he got six goals and two assists while on loan from Tottenham.



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
TV Report: MLS regional broadcast deals announced    
MLS teams are starting to announce regional television plans for the 2017 season. Houston and Sporting ...
Video Pick: Pouting keeper protests by giving up    
So upset was the goalkeeper of Vietnamese team Long An at a penalty kick call he ...
MLS Injury Report: Surgery sidelines Whitecaps' Reyna    
Vancouver will need a backup plan to replace departed playmaker Pedro Morales. The team has announced ...
What They're Saying: Wayne Shaw    
"I think two more than the four you have there." -- Wayne Shaw, pointing to a ...
What They're Saying: Lauren Holiday    
"I have never quite known suffering like I experienced the last 6 months. I can remember ...
CCL: Gonzalez's Pachuca finally shut out    
Pachuca was held without a goal for the first time in 25 games in the Concacaf ...
Datebook: NWSL will open fifth season on April 15    
The National Women's Soccer League will kick off its fifth season April 15 with four games, ...
MLS Moves: Mullins and D.C. extend their partnership    
Not many midseason trades have turned out so well as did the shift of Patrick Mullins ...
MLS Moves: Loons line up Swiss defender    
Another area of need -- outside back -- has been addressed by Minnesota United FC as ...
Sneak Peek: Cabrera and Cubo reunited in Houston    
No returning MLS team has made more changes than Houston. The Dynamo, last in the Western ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives