Friday, October 1, 2010

24 Under 24: The Other Guys is doing a really cool series called 24 under 24 right now, highlighting the 24 best players in MLS who are under 24 years old. The rankings are based on a combination of (1) Skill; (2) Upside; (3) Q-Rating or Marketability; (4) Future Value; and (5) Intangibles.

To this point they have released spots 24 through 6:

24. Dax McCarty (FC Dallas - M)
23. Roger Torres (Philadelphia Union - M)
22. Jack MacInerney (Philadelphia Union - F)
21. Kevin Alston (New England Revolution - D)
20. Will Johnson (Real Salt Lake - M)
19. Juninho (Los Angeles Galaxy - M)
18. Chris Pontius (DC United - F)
17. Teal Bunbury (Kansas City Wizards - F)
16. Tony Tchani (New York Red Bulls - M)
15. Robbie Rogers (Columbus Crew - M)
14. Bill Hamid (DC United - G)
13. Tristan Bowen (Los Angeles Galaxy - F)
12. Ryan Smith (Kansas City Wizards - M)
11. Ike Opara (San Jose Earthquakes - D)
10. Justin Braun (Chivas USA - F)
9. Tim Ream (New York Red Bulls - D)
8. Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire - G)
7. Brek Shea (FC Dallas - M)
6. Marco Pappa (Chicago Fire - M)

Unless there's something really amiss, the top 5 pretty much has to be: Andy Najar, Steve Zakuani, Omar Gonzalez, Fredy Montero, and Danny Mwanga. In my mind they would be ranked:

5. Steve Zakuani (Seattle Sounders - M)
4. Danny Mwanga (Philadelphia Union - F)
3. Andy Najar (DC United - M)
2. Omar Gonzalez (Los Angeles Galaxy - D)
1. Fredy Montero (Seattle Sounders - F)

But this post isn't about these guys, it's about a handful of young guys who just missed out on the top 24. Here are some more guys who deserved some thought:

George John (FC Dallas - D):A big reason why FC Dallas has one of the best defenses in MLS this year.
Sam Cronin (San Jose Earthquakes - M): I will argue to the death that Cronin going from Toronto FC to San Jose changed the future for both of these clubs.
Sanna Nyassi (Seattle Sounders - M) & Sainey Nyassi (New England Revolution - M): These twins give defenders fits with their speed and ability on the wings.
Tony Beltran (Real Salt Lake - D): He's worked his way into being a starter for the best defense in MLS.
Nana Attakora (Toronto FC - D): This was the worst omission if you ask me. He's been THE rock in the TFC defense. He and De Ro are pretty much the only two reasons that Toronto stayed as competitive as they did for so long. Just singling out defenders, I really can't understand how you put in Kevin Alston and not Attakora.

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