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Major League Soccer positional Top Tens: LEFT BACKS

Feb 23, 2013, 1:00 PM EST

FC Dallas v Los Angeles Galaxy Getty Images

Major League Soccer’s full backs may be evolving, but particularly at left back, the pool’s a bit shallow. Three of the first six players in our Top 10 are the get forward types that weren’t part of the game in previous seasons, but the list falls off quickly.

One of the top players shot up the chart over the last year. Another was recently left exposed in expansion. One player spent a lot of time in midfield last season, while another no longer starts for his team. Our Top 10 list may not have much depth, but at left back, one California team certainly does.

Yesterday is was the right. Today, it was the left, with a crowded field at the bottom of our ranking sure to inspire debate among MLS hardcores.

Here are our Top 10 Major League Soccer left backs.

1. LA Galaxy’s Todd Dunivant (pictured)
2. San Jose’s Justin Morrow
3. Real Salt Lake’s Chris Wingert
4. Sporting KC’s Seth Sinovic >

Sinovic was a free agent in May of 2011 and was exposed in expansion later that year. Now he’s one of the top four left backs in the league? It’s hard to argue he should be much lower than this.

5. Toronto FC’s Ashtone Morgan >

You can’t help but think Morgan would be higher on this list if the situation at Toronto FC has been more stable last season. Maybe Ryan Nelsen starts tapping into his potential. He’s still probably going to be TFC’s highest ranked individual player, and he’s only fifth.

6. Houston’s Corey Ashe
7. San Jose’s Ramiro Corrales >

He’s been around since 1996, and if it wasn’t for the emergence of Justin Morrow, he’d still be in Frank Yallop’s starting XI. When healthy, he still finds plenty of playing time between defense and midfield. A lot of other teams in the league (good ones) could use the 35-year-old.

8. Vancouver’s Alain Rochat
9. Chicago’s Gonzalo Segares
10. D.C. United’s Chris Korb

(MORE: the entire roster of ProSoccerTalk’s Major League Soccer previews and predictions)

  1. pensfan603 - Feb 23, 2013 at 2:32 PM

    Ashtone morgan really?
    and Wingert isnt three

  2. weremoose10 - Feb 23, 2013 at 4:19 PM

    I think Ashe is pretty underrated as a LB. He has really grown into that position and is a stable/key part of freeing up Brad Davis.

  3. joeyt360 - Feb 23, 2013 at 5:36 PM

    “Sinovic was a free agent in May of 2011 and was exposed in expansion later that year. Now he’s one of the top four left backs in the league? It’s hard to argue he should be much lower than this.”

    In fact I think it’s pretty easy to argue he should be higher. SKC’s system requires the wide backs to provide the width for the team, and to do a lot of double-duty, with an average position somewhere near the halfway line. If you can play that high pressure 4-3-3 and come in 1st place, your wide backs are going to have to be pretty good, and SKC’s are.

  4. crnelson10 - Feb 24, 2013 at 1:39 AM

    Whoa. Did Heath Pearce retire or something?

  5. pjbowmaster - Feb 24, 2013 at 3:52 PM

    Korb isn’t even the best Left Back on his team……that would be Daniel Woolard.

    • Richard Farley - Feb 24, 2013 at 5:06 PM

      Obviously, I disagree, but I’m glad you brought it up. It’s unclear Korb’s going to start, but based on what we saw at the end of last year, I decided to slot him in at 10.

  6. pjbowmaster - Feb 24, 2013 at 11:21 PM

    Yup……we disagree. I saw Korb as the weak link. Not sold on this player at all. Useful roster depth. But that’s it.

  7. korules - Feb 25, 2013 at 2:24 AM

    The best American based left back is still Kelley O’Hara.

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