Vancouver Whitecaps 2012 MLS Superdraft Preview

Building Blocks

On Thursday, the Vancouver Whitecaps  join the league in participating in the MLS Superdraft, selecting the cream of the crop of US college soccer players.

This year Vancouver is in possession of the 2nd overall pick, a reward of sorts for their low finish in the regular season.

The draft is nothing new for North American sports followers, but stands as a very peculiar entity in the view of world soccer. Elsewhere, players are acquired through trades, free agency, but most importantly through youth development systems and local team academies.

The draft is a novelty for most international players.

Although the draft is for US college players, there will be a large number of non-North American players available, who have taken the education route or are late bloomers.

This year’s draft is heavy on offensively inclined players, which is generally a rarer commodity. But for Vancouver, this is not an area of concern to be blunt.

With Davide Chiumiento, Eric Hassli, Camilo Sanvezzo, Atiba Harris, and Omar Salgado (the first overall selection in last year’s Superdraft), the Whitecaps are well stocked at forward and on offence.

The recent acquisitions of Argentine Martin Bonjour and South Korean Young-Pyo Lee have also bolstered the defence, so it is really the midfield that requires the most attention.

Whitecaps MLS Super Draft

On Thursday, the Whitecaps join the league in participating in the MLS Superdraft,

Two players stand out from the rest of the eligible draftees in the 2012 edition of the Superdraft.

Darren Mattocks, a Jamaican from Akron of Ohio is the most capable striker in the draft and he scored 21 goals in his final season.

He is speedy and a challenge for any defender.

At this time he would appear to be a good fit with the Montreal Impact, which holds the 1st overall position, ahead of Vancouver.

The other prime option would be Andrew Wenger of Duke University in North Carolina, who seems to better suited for Vancouver. He is a multi-talented player with admirable technique.

He opened his college career playing at the heart of defence, before moving up to the midfield, and even competed as a striker, contributing an eye opening 17 goals to conclude his time at Duke.

His versatility would be a good fit for The ‘Caps, where his patience on the ball and versatility projects him well as a midfielder who can help maintain possession, a quality lacking on the lower mainland team.

If there is a surprise in the draft, for example Wenger goes first to the Impact, then Vancouver, which desperately requires midfield support, may lean more towards North Carolina’s Enzo Martinez or Santa Barbara’s Luis Silva.

Both are smaller, quicker middle of the park players who possess a great touch and excellent passing ability.

If Montreal takes Mattocks, then Wenger is the logical choice for Vancouver.

Though, with two such talented players available who carry a lot of value, Martin Rennie may be prepared to trade his pick for a more established veteran midfielder if such a player is made available.


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About C-Mac

Born in Northern Ireland. Lived in Japan. Resides in BC. Followed the Canucks through thick and thin his entire life, while also trying to grow his Dave Babych moustache. He's a Seahawks 12th man, and since he's played the 'Beautiful Game' for 30+ years he's a Vancouver Whitecaps diehard as well. Connect with C-Mac today!
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