QUOTE(Z.I.P. @ Dec 12 2011, 09:24 PM)
Okay, back to the subject at hand, namely the Beautiful Game as it's played in the capitol of American Collegiate Soccer.
Those who have observed Akron strikers over the past four or more years, please provide me your opinion of how Darren Mattocks stacks up against the other recent Akron MLS-graduated strikers, namely Steve Zakuani, Teal Bunbury and Darlington Nagbe. Of that group, I must put Mattocks in fourth place. He has great pace, and has proved he can score versus US college opposition. However, he lacks the physicality of Bunbury (or frankly the other two -- this is his biggest weakness, IMO), the touch of Nagbe, or the pure football instincts and on-ball grace of Zakuani. Mattocks may be the best available forward in this year's draft, but IMHO this is the weakest draft overall in the past at least five years. Please discuss amongst yourselves, as I've become verklempt.
Definitely agree with you there. Unfortunately, I don't see him doing too well anywhere he goes. At least, not right away. He simply wouldn't fit in the MLS and probably would get muscled around. At Akron he doesn't seem to be able to finish very well. He is incredible at putting himself in position to score, but it seems like it usually takes him several clear 1v1s with the keeper to put one in. In Europe, he will need to learn to finish his chances when he gets them, because they won't come around as often. I feel like another year of college would be better for him, but I'm pretty much 100% sure he wouldn't even consider that. Don't get me wrong, he has potential to be an amazing striker, but he definitely needs more time to get there.