Thursday, October 25, 2018

Bang For The Buck

[Photo: AFP]

We're going to take a quick pause from handicapping the awards fields, but I'll cover the Newcomer of the Year on Friday and the MVP prize on Saturday. For now, let's celebrate the release of the annual MLS salary list by filling out a top-value XI.

Major League Soccer's roster rules make it imperative that clubs find players who provide maximum worth for every dollar on their paychecks. This entire line-up below (which would constitute a major title threat if together in real life) tallies up a wage bill under $3 million.

GK - Bill Hamid ($93K)

There's been tons of talk about Acosta, Rooney and even Canouse for their parts in D.C. United's resurrection, and deservedly so. But let's not overlook the netminder, who has come up with big saves at important moments. Hamid's conceded only 12 times in 13 starts since returning to the capital, winning nine of them.

Close but not quite: Jeff Attinella ($124K), Tyler Miller ($69K), Zack Steffen ($145K)

RB - Reggie Cannon ($67K)
CB - Aaron Long ($73K)
CB - Auston Trusty ($109K)
LB - Ben Sweat ($67K)

This crew basically picks itself, offering up a playoff quality back line for under $320K. Long might the best value player in the league. Youngsters Cannon and Trusty have played major parts on playoff teams. Sweat provides plenty of flank push for a club trying to reclaim its mojo.

Close but not quite: Mark McKenzie ($65K), Danilo Silva ($70K)

RM - Julian Gressel ($111K)
CM - Tyler Adams ($146K)
CM - Lucho Acosta ($652K)
LM - Alphonso Davies ($73K)

Not to sound like a broken record, but this was another easy collective to assemble. Acosta has offered MVP-level performance for a low-ish TAM hit. Gressel is nearly as important to Atlanta as Martinez and Miggy. Adams is a one-man wrecking crew for the other Supporters Shield contender. And Davies, well, he's only off to Bayern Munich after completing his breakout season.

Close but not quite: Mark Anthony-Kaye ($75K), Diego Fagundez ($190K), Yangel Herrera ($200K), Cristian Roldan ($191K)

F - Daniel Salloi ($82K)
F - Zlatan Ibrahimovic ($1.5M)

Simply put, Zlatan has been worth about five times his salary. Salloi is arguably the glue to Sporting KC's productive attack.

Close but not quite: Corey Baird ($55), Cory Burke ($71K), Kei Kamara ($1M), Mauro Manotas ($264K)

- Greg Seltzer

1 comment:

Adrian said...

It's nuts that Vancouver have had a best XI caliber winger on a minimum cap hit and have still been bad.