Top Ten new faces in Major League Soccer
At first blush, the roster tumult between Major League Soccer’s 2016 and 2017 has to be among the biggest in recent memory.
Not only did gigantic names like Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard leave the league, but two new teams meant six new available Designated Player slots.
[ MORE: PST’s MLS 2017 roundtable ]
There was always going to be an unusual influx of talent this season, but the fact that it was so hard to select only 10 names for a post like this shows the immense potential of MLS 2017.
So we used a non-mathematical formula that included skill, potential, and that wild X-factor of whether their names and games have raised our eyebrows.
10. Maxi Moralez, New York City FC -- Wherever he fits in the XI, the longtime Atalanta man will be a target for the opposition.
9. Cristian Colman, FC Dallas -- Playing atop the playmaker-heavy squad of Dallas would put a lot of players on this list.
8. Bismark Adjei-Boateng, Colorado Rapids -- One of several players with Premier League ties who will test their mettle in a high profile spot.
7. Jonathan Spector, Orlando City SC -- Could be the answer to Orlando’s issues with structure and defense.
6. Josef Martinez, Atlanta United -- Success in Europe + 37 caps for Venezuela including nine goals at age 23 = Yep.
5. Nemanja Nikolic, Chicago Fire -- The Legia Warsaw alum brings 55 goals over his past two seasons to Illinois.
4. Brooks Lennon, Real Salt Lake -- Not even positive the homecoming kid is going to start every week, but his U.S. U-20 performances and Liverpool mettle combine for excitement. If he plays a ton, has ROTY written all over him.
3. Romain Alessandrini, LA Galaxy -- Provided he acclimates to the beatings and difference in style between Ligue 1 and MLS, has a shot to take the city by storm.
2. Romell Quioto, Houston Dynamo (pictured atop page) -- One of two prototypical Honduran prospects with the Dynamo, Quioto may be built to adjust to the league a tad faster than Alberth Elis
1. Miguel Almiron, Atlanta United -- To have a player this good and this young is special for MLS.
Honorable mention: Ilie Sanchez (Sporting KC), Chris Mavinga (Toronto FC), Miguel Ibarra (Minnesota United), Gerso Fernandes (Sporting KC), Sebastian Blanco (Portland Timbers), Christian Ramirez (Minnesota United), Roland Lamah (FC Dallas), Oguchi Onyewu (Philadelphia Union), Andrew Carleton (Atlanta United), Alberth Elis (Houston Dynamo), Carlos Carmona (Atlanta United)