Jan 27, 2014, 10:04 PM EDT
Now that U.S. international Maurice Edu is in place at Philadelphia’s PPL Park, let’s find his place among MLS defensive midfielders.
He’s got to be top five, at very least, right? Even if you don’t think the once-and-again MLS man is quite there, I would wager that he will be top two or three in the league in most minds by the end of the year, assuming he can shake some of the Stoke City rust. (Edu played once over the last 18 or so months for Stoke, although he did get few good games while on loan in Turkey last year.)
A couple of things to note here:
First, Michael Bradley will not appear on this list. He’s not a defensive midfielder, not strictly speaking, anyway. He may line up as one at BMO Field out of organizational necessity, but Toronto FC manager Ryan Nelsen is no dummy. He knows that Bradley’s top utility comes as a linking man, a two-way presence who knows just when to insert himself into the opposition penalty area.
Similarly, Edu may not be a holding midfielder at PPL Park, where Brian Carroll has owned the spot. It’s possible that Edu plays slightly ahead of Carroll in a more advanced central role.
All that said, here is where I’d put Edu in the ranking of MLS holding midfielders going into the 2014 preseason.
1. Kyle Beckerman, Real Salt Lake
2. Osvaldo Alonso, Seattle Sounders
3. Maurice Edu, Philadelphia Union
4. Dax McCarty, New York Red Bulls
5. Patrice Bernier, Montreal Impact
Mar 12, 2014, 7:28 AM EDT
Champions League injury forced German midfielder off at halftime, will have Ozil out of lineup.
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Mar 12, 2014, 6:09 AM EDT
Barcelona carry a two-goal lead into Wednesday’s visit from City, while PSG’s four-goal edge has Laurent Blanc set to rest his stars.
Mar 12, 2014, 12:23 AM EDT
A 95th minute goal from Alan Gordon gives San Jose momentum ahead of next week’s second leg.
Mar 11, 2014, 11:54 PM EDT
Last year’s MLS Cup qualifiers start the season 1-2 in our rankings.
Mar 11, 2014, 9:43 PM EDT
Gunners prospect could soon be locked into an international career with Germany.
Mar 11, 2014, 8:56 PM EDT
Champions League was Milan’s last battle. Now, two months of auditions for next year’s team begin, with Seedorf decide who will return for the Rossoneri’s restart.
Mar 11, 2014, 8:06 PM EDT
Over the course of two legs, Arsenal was outshot 41-15 and had only 27 percent of the ball.
Mar 11, 2014, 7:02 PM EDT
Legacy didn’t matter, Costa is ready for your love, and Atlético improved but imperfect.
Mar 11, 2014, 6:34 PM EDT
Another sickening blow for Holden, who suffers knee ligament damage after latest comeback game goes horribly wrong:
Mar 11, 2014, 6:17 PM EDT
With the Gunners falling at the first UCL knockout hurdle once again, what did we learn this time?
Battling Arsenal bow out, as Bayern Munich reach UEFA Champions League quarters after 1-1 draw (3-1, agg.)
Mar 11, 2014, 5:42 PM EDT
Defending champions Bayern down Gunners to reach quarterfinals of Champions League:
Mar 11, 2014, 5:38 PM EDT
With seven goals in five Champions League games, Costa has led Atlético into the quarterfinals.
Mar 11, 2014, 4:44 PM EDT
Three Vancouver Whitecaps, three Columbus Crew take their place in the first week’s Best XI.
Mar 11, 2014, 4:03 PM EDT
Japanese youngster traveled with squad to Munich… then Arsenal found out he was ineligible:
Mar 11, 2014, 2:55 PM EDT
Nick Rimando snared the league’s honor, but the Dancing Bear claims PST’s first weekly award.
Mar 11, 2014, 2:02 PM EDT
Can the Gunners go on the road and beat Bayern 2-0 for a second-straight season in the UCL?
Mar 11, 2014, 1:20 PM EDT
American investment company now owns 25 percent of United’s total shares on the NYSE:
Mar 11, 2014, 12:43 PM EDT
Newcastle boss full of remorse after unsavory incident lands him in hot water:
Mar 11, 2014, 12:09 PM EDT
Pardew reprimanded by the FA, is his ban long enough?
Mar 11, 2014, 11:40 AM EDT
German youth international, eligible to play for the USMNT, set to extend stay with Arsenal:
- Arsenal’s Ozil out for “at least a few weeks” after injury in Champions League 0
- Preview: Barcelona, Manchester City stumble into Champions League second leg; PSG set to rest Ibrahimovic 0
- PST’s Major League Soccer Power Rankings – Week 1 0
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- Stuart Holden out for 6-9 months, as serious injury hits U.S. international once again 3
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