[MLS] Soccer America's position-by-position rankings for the 2010 season continue as Ridge Mahoney rates the league's attacking midfielders.
We’re not the only ones sometimes confused about where to classify players. Dwayne De Rosario and Sebastien Le Toux are listed as forwards on their teams’ stat pages, and yet earned selection to the MLS Best XI as midfielders.
In separating players into attacking midfielders, second forwards, and strikers, the line between the classifications can be blurry. In some cases the decisions have been arbitrary, as the primary purpose of the rankings is to acknowledge the league’s top players.
Soccer America's Top 10 MLS attacking midfielders for 2010
1. SEBASTIEN LE TOUX (PHILADELPHIA)
2. David Ferreira (FC Dallas)
3. Dwayne De Rosario (Toronto FC)
4. Javier Morales (Real Salt Lake)
5. Brad Davis (Houston)
6. Freddie Ljungberg (Seattle/Chicago)
7. Davy Arnaud (Kansas City)
8. Mehdi Ballouchy (Colorado/New York)
9. Jesus Padilla (Chivas USA)
10. Santino Quaranta (D.C. United)
Combining his 14 goals and 11 assists, Sebastien Le Toux contributed to 71 percent of the expansion Union’s goals, but that remarkable stat tells only part of the story. Le Toux is a relentless worker yet seems to glide up and down and across the field, searching for a space or channel to exploit the defense. He can finish, cross, flick and head the ball crisply, and he put 48 of his 90 shots on frame; a league-high mark of 53.3 percent among players who took at least 35 shots.
David Ferreira drove the potent FCD attack with explosive bursts, clever runs, and even shrewder passes. He’s one of the best signings in recent years. Dwayne De Rosario notched 15 goals yet drew more attention for his pantomime check-writing that angered team management. Javier Morales (76 fouls suffered) had to endure a lot of abuse; his absence for most of two playoff games contributed to RSL’s loss in the conference semifinals. The left-sided Brad Davis played on the flank as well as the middle and earned 12 assists for a very disappointing Dynamo.
Freddie Ljungberg changed clubs in midseason and livened up the Fire once he arrived with two goals and seven assists. Davy Arnaud settled into the central attacking role in a 4-3-3 formation and scored six goals, but drew three red cards. Mehdi Ballouchy also changed teams and gave the Red Bulls some good minutes down the stretch. Jesus Padilla hit six goals in 26 games for a poor team. Santino Quaranta floated in and out of roles trying to wake D.C. United from a deep slumber.
2010 Top Goalkeepers
2010 Top Right Backs
2010 Top Central Defenders
2010 Top Right Midfielders
2010 Top Holding and Central Midfielders
2010 Top Left Midfielders