New England Soccer Today

A Look into the Future

Coming off its worst season on record, there’s no doubt that the Revolution will have to maximize every available opportunity to help them get back to respectability. After selecting three established MLS players during last month’s Re-entry Draft, their next chance to bolster the roster arrives on Thursday with the SuperDraft.

Holding the third overall pick, as well as the 22nd slot, the Revolution can go in a number of directions. With holes in the back, on the wings and up top, one thing that shouldn’t be an issue is finding the talent to address any of their obvious shortcomings.

Here are a few players who Mike Burns and Jay Heaps may want to consider selecting on Thursday.

Andrew Wenger, Defender/Midfielder, Duke
22 games, 17 goals, 8 assists
Wenger would be a smart pick for any MLS club for the sheer fact that the Hermann Trophy winner can, well, pretty much do it all. As a defender, he has the size (6’0, 185) and instincts to slide right into the center of the Revs backline, where last year’s first round pick A.J. Soares shined. Or, if the Revs are looking for a scorer, Wenger could summon his recent goalscoring ways. In 2011, Wenger was reassigned up the middle of the park, where he scored an impressive 17 goals for Duke. Should Wenger remain available at the third pick, the Revolution can’t afford not to take the uber-talented Blue Devil.

Matt Hedges at day 1 of the 2012 MLS Player Combine held on January 6, 2012 at Broward County Regional Park in Lauderhill, FL. (Photo Credit: Andy Mead / MLSsoccer.com)

Matt Hedges, Defender, North Carolina
26 games, 6 goals, 1 assist
Should Wenger be taken by Montreal or Vancouver, the Revs can bolster their defense by going with one of the anchors of the reigning College Cup champions. Hedges, a tall (6-4) and imposing presence, is considered by many as the best college defender available. In addition to his size, Hedges has the speed and ball skills to make him a legitimate First Kick starter. With a huge gap in the middle of their defense due to the offseason losses of Ryan Cochrane and Franco Coria, the Revs would surely benefit from having another talented center back at their disposal.

Enzo Martinez, Midfielder, North Carolina
26 Games, 9 goals, 11 assists
What was something that was lacking from the Revolution in 2011? A young playmaker. Sure, the Revs had two solid central midfielders in Benny Feilhaber and Shalrie Joseph, but there wasn’t much that came from the outside for long stretches of the season. The most intriguing part of the Uruguyan’s game is his speed and ability to adapt. After featuring as the primary goalscorer in 2010, Martinez re-invented himself in 2011 as a dangerous, two-way playmaker for Tar Heels – a sublime transition that wowed scouts and coaches alike.

Kelyn Rowe, Midfielder, UCLA
24 games, 6 goals, 10 assists
Much like Martinez, Rowe is another intriguing playmaker that the Revs may want to consider grabbing at the draft. Though he may not have the same pedigree as Martinez, the Bruin midfielder could provide versatility and, at worst, much needed depth on the wings. Although some reports classify him as a raw prospect, he may be the perfect project for Heaps to get his hands on. Granted, he may not have the resume of a top 3 pick in some circles, but the Revs may want to consider taking Rowe with the 22nd pick if they draft a defender with the third selection.

Casey Townsend, Forward, Maryland
21 games, 17 goals, 2 assists
The senior forward becomes more enticing now that Billy Schuler has decided to go Sweden. Although he may not be the biggest striker available, what he lacks in size is made up in his speed and an uncanny knack for creating chances. It might be a reach to take Townsend at number three, but with trade rumors flying around, it might be a good deal to trade the pick down to take the former Terrapin and gather another pick should the Revolution pursue that route.

Second Round Options:
Calum Mallace, Midfielder, Marquette
16 games, 3 goals, 6 assists
The Marquette midfielder could be a solid second round pick for the Revolution. He was named 2011 Big East Midfielder of the Year and during his four years with the Golden Eagles, the Scottish midfielder showed his best in the clutch, with eight of his 13 career goals categorized as game-winners. Given his size (6-2), it wouldn’t be surprising to see Mallace get a look for a spot in the back.

Other potential second round selections:
Andy Rose, Midfielder, UCLA
Kevan George, D/M, Central Florida
Hunter Jumper, Defense, Virginia

One Comment

  1. Chris B

    January 9, 2012 at 3:29 pm

    I agree with the players listed but you should’ve included Chandler Hoffman! The Revs just signed a new central defender so I believe they are really looking at Hoffman to draft at no. 3 because Mattocks will likely go top 2 and Townsend may be good but probably not top 3. In the second round hopefully/maybe a good left back or center back is still available for depth. However, I sincerely believe the Revs are looking for a striker to go with their number three pick or they may be looking at options to trade down if the offer is good enough, in that case, Townsend would be a great fit if still available.

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