By IVES GALARCEP
PHILADELPHIA– The 2014 MLS Draft is a half a day away, and it’s time for one final look at how the draft just might go on Thursday.
Only the first two rounds of the MLS Draft will take place, and rest assured there will be plenty of options for teams to choose from in those two rounds, with a majority of the players chosen being defenders.
In case you missed it earlier today, I unveiled my first-round MLS Mock Draft on Goal.com, with Patrick Mullins being the top pick. You can get the detailed write-ups explaining all 19 of the first-round picks there.
For a look at the later rounds (three of the four rounds for now, I will fill out the fourth round by the morning), you can see all the players I have projected to be drafted in the final SBI 2014 MLS Mock Draft:
The SBI 2014 MLS Mock Draft (Version 4.0):
1- D.C. UNITED- Patrick Mullins, Maryland, Forward/Midfielder
2- PHILADELPHIA UNION- Andre Blake, UConn, Goalkeeper
3- VANCOUVER WHITECAPS- Christian Dean, Cal, Centerback
4- NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION- Schillo Tshuma, Maryland, Forward
5- FC DALLAS- Pedro Ribeiro, Coastal Carolina, Midfielder
6- PHILADELPHIA UNION- Steve Birnbaum, California, Centerback
7- VANCOUVER WHITECAPS- Marco Franco, UC-Irvine, Right back
8- SEATTLE SOUNDERS- A.J. Cochran, Wisconsin, Centerback
9- SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES- Eric Miller, Creighton, Right Back
10- MONTREAL IMPACT- Mamadou Diouf, UConn, Forward/Midfielder
11- COLORADO RAPIDS- Kevin Cope, Michigan State, Centerback
12- NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION- Ben Sweat, South Florida, Left back
13- CHICAGO FIRE- Marlon Hairston, Louisville, Central Midfielder
14- COLUMBUS CREW- Kyle Venter, New Mexico, Centerback
15- TORONTO FC- Grant Van De Casteele, Notre Dame, Centerback
16- HOUSTON DYNAMO- Nick Hagglund, Xavier, Centerback
17- PORTLAND TIMBERS- Damion Lowe, Hartford, Centerback
18- REAL SALT LAKE- Andre Lewis, Jamaica, Central midfielder
19- NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION- Steve Neumann, Georgetown, Midfielder/Forward
20- CHIVAS USA- Tesho Akindele, Colorado School of Mines, Forward/Right Winger
21- SEATTLE SOUNDERS- Aodhan Quinn, Akron, Central Midfielder
22- NEW YORK RED BULLS- J.J. Koval, California, Defensive Midfielder
23- LOS ANGELES GALAXY- Jared Watts, Wake Forest, Defensive Midfielder
24- TORONTO FC- Richie Marquez, University of Redlands, Central Defender
25- PHILADELPHIA UNION- Joey Dillon, Georgetown, Defensive Midfielder
26- PORTLAND TIMBERS- Ryan Neil, California, Right Winger
27- PHILADELPHIA UNION- Victor Chavez, UCLA, Forward
28- SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES- Taylor Peay, Washington, Centerback
29- MONTREAL IMPACT- Luca Gimenez, Wake Forest, Right winger/Attacking Midfielder
30- VANCOUVER WHITECAPS- Reinaldo Brenes, Akron, Forward
31-NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION- Romena Bowie, VCU, Defensive Midfielder
32-HOUSTON DYNAMO- Joe Sofia, UCLA, Centerback
33- LOS ANGELES GALAXY- Justin Portillo, Coastal Carolina, Left winger/Forward
34- NEW YORK RED BULLS- Mark Sherrod, Memphis, Forward
35- COLORADO RAPIDS- Alex Martinez, North Carolina State, Central Midfielder
36- PORTLAND TIMBERS- Thomas McNamara, Clemson, Central Midfielder
37- MONTREAL IMPACT- Robbie Derschang, Akron, Left Winger
38- SPORTING KANSAS CITY- Victor Munoz , UCLA, Attacking Midfielder/Right Winger
39- PORTLAND TIMBERS- Eric Stevenson, Akron, Left Back/Left Midfielder
40- CHIVAS USA- Ronny Mendoza, Ecuador, Centerback
41- SPORTING KANSAS CITY- Pete Caringi, UMBC, Forward
42- COLUMBUS CREW- Fabio Pereira, Michigan, Attacking Midfielder
43- FC DALLAS- George Fochive, UConn, Defensive Midfielder
44- PHILADELPHIA UNION- Nick Walker, FDU, Centerback
45- VANCOUVER WHITECAPS- A.J. Corrado, Indiana, Attacking Midfielder
46- PHILADELPHIA UNION- Kadeem Dacres, UMBC, Left Winger/Attacking Midfielder
47- SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES- Michael Kafari, New Mexico, Defensive Midfielder
48-MONTREAL IMPACT- Jimmy Ockford, Louisville, Centerback
49- COLORADO RAPIDS- Kingsley Baiden, UCSB, Defensive Midfielder
50- NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION- Mackenzie Pridham, Cal Poly, Forward
51- VANCOUVER WHITECAPS- Patrick Slogic, Cornell, Central Defender
52- PHILADELPHIA UNION- Nikita Kotlov, Indiana, Left Winger
53- REAL SALT LAKE- Andy Lubahn, Wake Forest, Forward
54- HOUSTON DYNAMO- Quinton Christina, Suriname, Forward/Defender
55- SEATTLE SOUNDERS- Kees Heemskerk, College of Charleston, Goalkeeper
56- REAL SALT LAKE- Enrique Cardenas, UC-Irvine- Forward/Attacking Midfielder
57- SPORTING KC- Zach Barnes, Creighton, Defensive Midfielder
58- VANCOUVER WHITECAPS-
59- CHIVAS USA-
60- TORONTO FC-
61- CHICAGO FIRE-
62- FC DALLAS-
63- PHILADELPHIA UNION-
64- VANCOUVER WHITECAPS-
65- CHICAGO FIRE-
66- SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES-
67- MONTREAL IMPACT-
68- COLORADO RAPIDS-
69- D.C. UNITED-
70- REAL SALT LAKE-
71- HOUSTON DYNAMO-
72- LOS ANGELES GALAXY-
73- PORTLAND TIMBERS-
74- SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES-
75- CHICAGO FIRE-
76- SPORTING KC-
This is why you guys are blog writers and have no idea what a real soccer player is.
Neumann such a bad combine, where does he fit, very disappointing…oh he was drafted #4.
Jimmy Ockford – did he even attend the Combine?? Would never know based on your coverage. Went #21 to Seattle. If anything learned is that you guys are absolutely clueless when positioning players. Keep up the good work!!
Rarely does anybody get that right, so please just stop. They did have Blake going to the Union, so that was going out on the limb and nailing it.
They were so far off on their picks. The coverage all combine was horrible. Why even waste every ones time? Just keep cutting and pasting other articles.
I could see Olsen wanting to take Riberio, so maybe DC trades down.
I really don’t see any way Eric Stevenson can be a left back. At Akron, he’s been purely an attacking player, and his main attributes are taking guys 1v1, controlling in tight spaces, and getting shots off quickly with minimal space. He is very skilled offensively, but to be honest, I haven’t seen him do much defensively the last few seasons.
I cant see the union taking Blake makes no sense. They should take a CB though, now I can see Vancouver taking Blake though which makes more sense. DC shouldn’t take Mullins at 1 they need defensive and midfield help.
The Revs have 4 players on roster who can play left back. That said, I don’t know why they would take one at #12 and pass up a GA attacking midfielder in Hairston. That bit doesn’t make any sense to me.
As a DC united fan. I’m on a be mad if Mullins is taken first. I see Mullins as the Tim tebow in mls. I hope not. But DC need the most mls ready player
Which is why they should draft Birnbaum. If DC screws up this pick, I’ll be one step closer to throwing in the towel for this season. Crazy to think a week ago my expectations for 2014 were so high and have fallen so fast within the last day or so.
I’m with you and Jason on this one. DC has a stable of old center backs. Birnbaum or Dean will be much better investments than Mullins. They need help everywhere except in goal; take the best player available.
DC United really screwed up their rebuilding by trading away their place in the allocation order. Marco Pappa was a perfect fit for them in their situation. At this point, they need to do the safest possible thing and that is to pick Birnbuam. If they screw this up, they will come away looking really bad after having put together the worst season in their history. They need to show that they can be competent at this point.
There is another solution: Trade the pick for a good player (not too old), or trade Willis for a good player, and take Blake with the first pick
I think that the Union will go after Ben Sweat with one of the first round picks. He is a known commodity to them and it will possibly fill a need.
At 2 or 6? Or would this be a trade back into the 1st round situation?
I agree–that would be quite a reach from what I’ve read at 2 or 6. If they do trade down I like it.
I tried pointing this out in an earlier comment to version 3.0 — DC United have RSL’s pick at #56 in the 3rd round. The McDonald trade.
Plus a few others that need to be changed: Colorado has #33 from LA (Mastroeni trade), Portland has #71 from Houston (Horst), Seattle has a bonus pick #77 (Cato).
Christina is from Curaçao not Suriname.
The Whitecaps have 3 centerbacks (including two young ones that they’re high on in Leveron and Mitchell) plus are close to signing Demerit to an extension (the Camilo situation has undoubtedly slowed down that signing). They won’t be drafting a centerback.
Good thing Franco will play right back
wow- GoalKeeper for the Union? Keen for it to happen because Blake looks like the business, but will they sell Macmath as a result? What will they get for him?
I find it hard to agree with this pick. MacMath has been doing well and Zach Steffen looks very much the goalkeeper of the future. Only way this pick makes sense if if they strongly feel that MacMath is going to make the jump to Europe before Steffen is done with college ball.
Or has Hack been talking up Blake to try and sell the pick? What might Philly get for the number 2 pick? player and 1st round draft choice? 1st rounder this year and a first rounder 2015?
I hope Steffen signs for the Union, but I could see him going to Europe instead of MLS.
I wonder if having Mullins go #1 above would make the Union take a chance on waiting to see if Birnbaum/Dean are still around at #6 and using #2 for an all-around talent like Blake. If DC (or whoever is picking #1) takes one of those two I can see Union jumping on the other one at #2.
I hope we take Blake. Can’t really lose on him. Either keep him and trade Macmath, force another team (looking at Vanny and 3rd pick + extras) to trade up before pick happens, look at another team (again Vanny) to pick someone we want with their (3rd in this case) pick after trying to call our bluff + extras. Win all around.
is a draft really necessary in MLS? In the NFL it is because all players must enter it. It’s a major factor in giving all teams a fair shot. Plus the league minimum in the NFL is still a huge salary. Hard to feel sorry for someone from San Diego that gets drafted to play in Buffalo when they are making that kind of coin.
But in MLS the best players are not coming through the draft. And its just a horribly inefficient way to funnel players into pro-careers. It’s also unfair to the players, most who will be on minimum salaries with no say in where they will begin their career. When someone graduates college with business degree he isn’t forced to enter a draft that will decide where he works. Why is soccer any different?
Take for example Omar Salgado. He was drafted #1 at age 17. He’s from Texas. Where was he forced to start his career? In Canada. Not only another country, but another culture. I read an article where he talked about his struggle to adjust and being away from his family. He’s had injuries that have been the biggest obstacle to his development but there’s no doubt if he was allowed to start his career in Texas he would have been much better off.
so what? He thought he would pick where he wants to play? Its not like he would he be complaining if Barcelona signed him. Youre going to be homesick regardless at that young age almost all European players go through that. And no one told him to go pro, if he wanted to stay in Texas he shouldve went to college or something
you didn’t counter any of my arguments for why the MLS Draft is not needed.
At the same time, you didn’t offer a better alternative to the draft.
Here is an alternative. Players can sign with whichever team they want and that wants them. Just like the real world where people look for jobs. Just like how it happens everywhere else in the soccer world. There are no amateur drafts anywhere else.
and no..most European players start off their careers close to home. There are exceptions, Messi at Barca. Or anyone who has the opportunity to train at Barca.
That’s the same reason why there shouldn’t be any drafts in any sports. Not just MLS, NBA, NFL, NHL, MLB, take your pick.
MLS needs a draft because the academy program is not comprehensive and will not be at all due to the size of the country and the relatively small area covered by MLS clubs.
That’s not a reason to have a draft. Why not let college players sign where they want? From an MLS perspective, the main reason is to keep costs down. If guys could negotiate with multiple teams, MLS teams would have to open their wallets a little more.
I agree you could make an argument against the draft in any sport on the basis that an employee has the right to chose his employer.
But at least in the NFL and NBA for instance, the draft is the primary factor in deciding how good a team will be. All players must enter it. Even if a 30 yr old Euro superstar wants to play in the NBA, he has to enter the draft.
Soccer is global and MLS has an academy system. The draft in MLS is not a primary factor in deciding a teams future. It’s pretty much no factor at all. When Thierry Henry comes to MLS he doesn’t enter the draft.
What’s a good argument for the MLS draft? I’ve never heard one.
“Not only another country, but another culture.”
That’s just funny. Rather than blame Salgado’s failure to develop on the exotic and alien culture of Canada (they’re too polite!), maybe Salgado wasn’t all he was cracked up to be. IMO, the problem with the draft is it’s mostly speculation, especially for teenagers.
that’s beside the point. When you’re taking young kids and shipping them all over the country to start their careers, many times away from their family and comfort zone, on the aggregate you are going to stall a lot of potential careers.
The MLS SuperDraft is not super. It’s an inefficient and harmful cog in our system. There is no good argument for it.
4 Rounds? Is the NCAA College Soccer talent pool that deep??