Home > Forwards, MNT Lineups, Tournament Statistics > 2010 World Cup Roster Projections — Midfielders

2010 World Cup Roster Projections — Midfielders

The final part of our brief, statistical look at the candidates for the 2010 World Cup roster bring us to the midfield.  By now, this should be old hat for readers.  If you’re new, here’s the summary:  Yanks Abroad and ESPN ranked the U.S. players they felt were in contention for the roster and I’m using statistics from ussoccer.com to take a look at the players at each position.

Player Y.A. ESPN 09-min 09-G 09-A BB-min BB-G BB-A
Landon Donovan 1 2 900 4 5 2635 16 14
Clint Dempsey 1 3 879 3 2 2692 10 5
Michael Bradley 1 6 714 3 0 2457 6 0
Benny Feilhaber 10 14 292 0 0 1202 2 1
Jermaine Jones 10 15 0 0 0 0 0 0
Maurice Edu 16 20 1 0 0 624 0 1
Jose Torres 10 27 74 0 0 180 0 0
Ricardo Clark 24 13 484 0 0 1510 1 1
DaMarcus Beasley 28 22 440 0 0 2091 5 5
Sacha Kljestan 28 25 375 3 0 1120 3 3
Stuart Holden 31 28 180 2 1 180 2 1
Pablo Mastroeni 31 30 197 0 0 997 0 1
Robbie Rogers 45 29 248 1 2 248 1 2
Bobby Convey 31   0 0 0 225 0 0
Mikkel Diskerud 31   0 0 0 0 0 0
Santino Quaranta 31   153 1 0 153 1 0


As with defenders, we can expect Bradley to take eight players at the position.  Based purely on average rankings from the two sources, Ricardo Clark is the cut-off point and DaMarcus Beasley is the first loser.  It would complete quite the fall from grace for Beasley.  Of the six U.S. players with at least 2000 minutes in the Bradley era, DaMarcus Beasley is the only one who has no points in 2009.

One thing that’s strange about the projected midfielders is that three of them have been virtually nonexistent in 2009:  Jones isn’t even eligible yet, Edu has one minute to his credit, and Torres is stuck on 74′  (though perhaps he’ll merit a look when at be rested enough in time for the WCQ in Mexico).  I suspect this is a bit of optimism by American fans:  a best-is-yet-to-come mentality exciting us for 2010.  But it does force our Gold Cup midfielders to fight battles against apparations and aspirations rather than against concrete opponents.  And it will mean that we should see a couple unusual midfield pairings in full-squad matches so that the tickets are earned based on performances and not presumptions.

  1. wjmooner
    July 15, 2009 at 3:53 pm

    I’ve never even seen highlights of him playing but I am convinced that Mikkel Diskerud is going to make this team. He’s like a fantasy version of Freddy Adu, now that Freddy exists and all. I mean, even his name sounds like some fake name from Pro Evo.

    You are right that it’s weird we have some near locks who haven’t gotten much time this year, but 1) Jones is better than everyone we have in the middle, including Bradley; 2) Edu was starting for Rangers at the end of the year and is hurt or probably would have started instead of Rico in SA; and 3) We’re all convinced that JFT did something really bad to Bradley in the locker room in Costa Rica but Bradley will eventually forgive him.

    Quite frankly, I think we end up with three beasts in the middle (JJ, Edu, Bradley), our three established playmakers (Deuce, Donovan, Benny) and 2 young wildcards (Holden, Diskerud). Here’s to hoping we cap Mikkel in a meaningless qualifier in the upcoming months.

    • Michael
      July 15, 2009 at 7:23 pm

      All great points. And Diskerud looks like he’s solidly in favor — starting today’s Champions League Second-Qualifying-Round Match for Stabaek, a 1-1 away draw for his squad.

      I hadn’t really thought about giving two spots to “wildcards” but watching Holden play in the Gold Cup, I can see the logic in it. Get a guy out there who isn’t afraid to take shots and is capable of putting them on goal (particularly from distance) and just add an x-factor. On the other hand, I don’t think Bradley takes two offensive wildcards even w/ the three beasts. Either way, I think midfielders 7 & 8 will give us a good idea of what Bradley’s plan is heading into the World Cup. If they’re offensive guys, we can expect continued pressure even if we grab the lead. If not, Bradley’s huddle-in-the-penalty-area-and-pray will be the gameplan.

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