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Ten players to follow at the combine
by Paul Kennedy, January 11th, 2013 2:54AM
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[SUPERDRAFT COUNTDOWN] The seven players who signed Generation adidas contracts are all expected to high in the 2013 MLS SuperDraft, but coaches and scouts will also be eyeing other players at the adidas MLS Player Combine that begins Friday at Central Broward Regional Park in Lauderhill, Fla. For a look at 10 players to follow at the combine ...

CARLOS ALVAREZ (Connecticut). Chivas USA holds the No. 2 pick in the SuperDraft and will likely take a Mexican-American in keeping with its stated intention to return to its roots and tap into the local Hispanic community. Alvarez, who had 42 assists in four seasons at UConn, certainly fits the bill. He played for Pateadores and LAFC and attended Salesian High School in Los Angeles.

KYLE BEKKER
(Boston College). Canadian clubs hold four of the top eight picks in the 2013 draft, so interest in the Canadian under-23 midfielder is high.

ASHTON BENNETT (Coastal Carolina). The Jamaican had 36 goals in 40 games in his two seasons with the Chanticleers after transferring from junior college. MLS scouts will be watching him closely to see how he stands up against combine defenders. His Canadian residency status is a plus.

RYAN FINLEY (Notre Dame).He didn't start a game in two seasons at Notre Dame after transferring from Duke, but he had 28 goals for the Irish. He will be the top pick among American forwards in the draft. How high could depend on how be does in Ft. Lauderdale.

JOSE GOMEZ (Creighton). Draft charts have him going everywhere from No. 2 -- a local Mexican-American signing for Chivas USA -- to the middle of the second round. Gomez, who helped lead the Bluejays to the Men's College Cup the last two seasons, recently trained at Tijuana.

KEVIN MERCADO (Liga de Quito). The youngest of five players brought in from abroad, the 17-year-old Mercado played three games for Ecuador at the 2011 Under-17 World Cup. At the time, the right back was reported to be targeted by Chelsea, but later in the year he suffered a serious knee injury. Ecuadorans have been part of the combine for several years now. The top player was flashy Joao Plata, who had an all too short stay at Toronto FC.

LEBOGANG MOLOTO (Lindsey Wilson). One of three players from the small-college ranks added to the combine rosters, the South African has left the Blue Raiders after only three seasons. The 5-11 forward, who just turned 20, had 26 goals at the NAIA powerhouse.

DILLON POWERS (Notre Dame). The former U.S. under-20 midfielder is coming off a strong senior season to put him in position to be a top 10-15 pick. He can solidify his status at the combine.

ERIC SCHOENLE (West Virginia). GA signings Andrew Farrell and Walker Zimmerman are considered the top defenders in the 2013 class, but Schoenle could also go high. The combine will be him a chance to show off his tools: size, good in the air, decent skills.

DYLAN TUCKER-GANGES (Washington). Tucker-Gangnes is another central defender who is projected to go in the first round. He's being compared favorably to another central defender who came out of UW without a lot of publicity, George John of FC Dallas.



2 comments
  1. I w Nowozeniuk
    commented on: January 11, 2013 at 10:40 a.m.
    Not one word about these player's technical abilities, vision, execution and making things happen.
  1. Bill Ford
    commented on: January 11, 2013 at 11:24 a.m.
    It would be a crime if Gomez doesn't go in early in the first round. He's a master at creation, has it all, elite all the way. Finely is beyond OVERRATED.

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