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Mark-Anthony Kaye


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Unsung hero last night. His stock is up big time. We probably shouldn't be surprised that he rose to the occassion in such a big game. Wasn't too long ago he was battling Liga MX teams all the way to the CCL final. No different than Osorio really, who didn't have his best gamr today. That's just it though, one guy falters and the other steps up, and Kaye certainly did that.

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In Kaye, Eustaquio, Osorio, and Piette, we have four mids who can start against anyone in the region and be expected to put in a top performance. All of these guys having this opportunity to gel has been very important, as they will all be around for next cycle as well.

Then, for this cycle we have the luxury of bringing in Wotherspoon, Arfield and Atiba, who are outstanding complementary pieces, but those first 4 must be given the keys to the kingdom this cycle. With the support of those veterans our midfield is looking very healthy indeed.

As for the generation behind them, I am not sold on Liam Fraser making the jump. He may be a guy you can plug into the 23 man squad here or there, but at this stage it's hard to see him as consistently being anything more than that. Priso I have hope for, but it seems too early to tell what he will be. For now those it is worth keeping him involved. Same goes for Okello. Metcalfe on the other hand needs to get solid footing on his club career before we can even talk about what his prospects are. 

The one who I believe can crack this squad regularly in due time is Baldisimo. From what I saw last night he was very good again. I believe this player will force his way into our core midfield group this cycle, as long as he stays healthy. I just see a player who is too talented not to be involved, and I think we will see how good he is when he is playing with better players. 

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19 minutes ago, Obinna said:

In Kaye, Eustaquio, Osorio, and Piette, we have four mids who can start against anyone in the region and be expected to put in a top performance. All of these guys having this opportunity to gel has been very important, as they will all be around for next cycle as well.

Then, for this cycle we have the luxury of bringing in Wotherspoon, Arfield and Atiba, who are outstanding complementary pieces, but those first 4 must be given the keys to the kingdom this cycle. With the support of those veterans our midfield is looking very healthy indeed.

As for the generation behind them, I am not sold on Liam Fraser making the jump. He may be a guy you can plug into the 23 man squad here or there, but at this stage it's hard to see him as consistently being anything more than that. Priso I have hope for, but it seems too early to tell what he will be. For now those it is worth keeping him involved. Same goes for Okello. Metcalfe on the other hand needs to get solid footing on his club career before we can even talk about what his prospects are. 

The one who I believe can crack this squad regularly in due time is Baldisimo. From what I saw last night he was very good again. I believe this player will force his way into our core midfield group this cycle, as long as he stays healthy. I just see a player who is too talented not to be involved, and I think we will see how good he is when he is playing with better players. 

Agree with much of the analysis.  The one thing I would point out is that Eustaquio and Fraser don’t represent different generations.  At 24, Stephen is just a year older than Liam and is here as our midfield anchor for quite a while.   As Oso, Arfield and inevitably Hutch exit, Eustaquio will provide essential continuity during the changing of the guard.

As for the next crop of players, I think Baldi, Priso and Nelson will provide a good foundation of very capable players.  I know some folks haven’t been super impressed with some of Nelson’s outings for TFC but the kid is still just 18.  He has great skills and a lot of time to mature into a very capable player.  I am rooting for Okello too, but he will be turning 21 soon so I think needs to start showing a bit more - he is in that age where you start to transition from prospect to player.  As for Priso, I am pretty confident he will be a good player.   He seems to have everything you need.  

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2 hours ago, dyslexic nam said:

Agree with much of the analysis.  The one thing I would point out is that Eustaquio and Fraser don’t represent different generations.  At 24, Stephen is just a year older than Liam and is here as our midfield anchor for quite a while.   As Oso, Arfield and inevitably Hutch exit, Eustaquio will provide essential continuity during the changing of the guard.

As for the next crop of players, I think Baldi, Priso and Nelson will provide a good foundation of very capable players.  I know some folks haven’t been super impressed with some of Nelson’s outings for TFC but the kid is still just 18.  He has great skills and a lot of time to mature into a very capable player.  I am rooting for Okello too, but he will be turning 21 soon so I think needs to start showing a bit more - he is in that age where you start to transition from prospect to player.  As for Priso, I am pretty confident he will be a good player.   He seems to have everything you need.  

Stephen is a 1996 and Liam is a 1998, so I guess it's about where you draw the cut off. Okello and Baldisimo are 2000 and Priso is 2002, so roughly the same gap as Eustaquio and Fraser (I realize Stephen is almost a 97 due to having a late birthday). 

The way I think of these generations is who is in their prime.

For example, WC 2022 is the cycle of Osorio, Kaye, Piette, and Eustaquio, along with non-midfielders Larin, Henry, Adekugbe, Laryea and Cavallini. These players are all in their prime right now in this qualifying cycle.

None of the following players are in their prime at the moment: Kennedy, Miller, Johnston, Brault-Guillard, Buchanan, Davies, David, Baldisimo, Okello, Fraser, Cornelius and Millar. 

However, this will be the core of our next cycle and they'll be all roughly in their prime, some early prime and some late. 

As for the current cycle, there is probably only one guy who is solidly "early prime", which is Eustaquio. In 2026 he will be 29, which is where Oso is at the moment, so he'll likely be one of those rare cases of being in his prime for two cycles.

The caveat here is that it depends on how players individually mature and age out. Position plays a role as well, as defenders and especially keepers are late bloomers.

Anyways, just my take on it. I agree with the take in your post.

Edited by Obinna
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3 hours ago, Obinna said:

In Kaye, Eustaquio, Osorio, and Piette, we have four mids who can start against anyone in the region and be expected to put in a top performance. All of these guys having this opportunity to gel has been very important, as they will all be around for next cycle as well.

Then, for this cycle we have the luxury of bringing in Wotherspoon, Arfield and Atiba, who are outstanding complementary pieces, but those first 4 must be given the keys to the kingdom this cycle. With the support of those veterans our midfield is looking very healthy indeed.

As for the generation behind them, I am not sold on Liam Fraser making the jump. He may be a guy you can plug into the 23 man squad here or there, but at this stage it's hard to see him as consistently being anything more than that. Priso I have hope for, but it seems too early to tell what he will be. For now those it is worth keeping him involved. Same goes for Okello. Metcalfe on the other hand needs to get solid footing on his club career before we can even talk about what his prospects are. 

The one who I believe can crack this squad regularly in due time is Baldisimo. From what I saw last night he was very good again. I believe this player will force his way into our core midfield group this cycle, as long as he stays healthy. I just see a player who is too talented not to be involved, and I think we will see how good he is when he is playing with better players. 

I still think Atiba-Steph would work better than any other combination. I'm all for prepping for the future, but Atiba can't just be a complimentary piece, even if he's 38. He's still our best midfielder. 

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1 minute ago, PiedPilko said:

I still think Atiba-Steph would work better than any other combination. I'm all for prepping for the future, but Atiba can't just be a complimentary piece, even if he's 38. He's still our best midfielder. 

We'll have to see, because we only saw them play together against Bermuda and that's a tough gauge. I wasn't overly impressed but in theory that could be our best combo.

The thing is, I expect Atiba to start for us, but I still view him as complimentary, because he won't play every game. Ditto for Arfield. That's why I see them complimenting our core. They are basically starting caliber midfielders but they won't have the legs to start every match in a 3 match window.

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3 minutes ago, Obinna said:

We'll have to see, because we only saw them play together against Bermuda and that's a tough gauge. I wasn't overly impressed but in theory that could be our best combo.

The thing is, I expect Atiba to start for us, but I still view him as complimentary, because he won't play every game. Ditto for Arfield. That's why I see them complimenting our core. They are basically starting caliber midfielders but they won't have the legs to start every match in a 3 match window.

Not every match, of course. But I think we're underestimating his stamina a bit. He regularly plays 75-80 minutes twice a week with Besiktas. If he's willing, I would start him for the first and third game every match window.

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1 hour ago, PiedPilko said:

I still think Atiba-Steph would work better than any other combination. I'm all for prepping for the future, but Atiba can't just be a complimentary piece, even if he's 38. He's still our best midfielder. 

Agreed.  However, I feel both Hutchinson and Eustaquio will be at their best around 2026.    

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2 hours ago, PiedPilko said:

Not every match, of course. But I think we're underestimating his stamina a bit. He regularly plays 75-80 minutes twice a week with Besiktas. If he's willing, I would start him for the first and third game every match window.

I have been backing Hutchinson when others were saying he was done, so it is not that I am underestimating his stamina. I am just trying to keep in mind he typically uses the FIFA windows to recover, and that he often skips training to recover. That's why I find it difficult to see him playing that much every window.

If he starts 2 out of 3 in the September window, I can perhaps see him skipping the October window all together. If you still consider that underestimating his stamina, then fair enough. I see it as being realistic. I am not expecting him every window.

If we do get him for every window, which I am hoping, I think we may see him and Arfield starting the biggest matches and closing out the "easier" ones, and that would work out to starting less than 2 out of 3 games over the entire round.

Either way, will be interesting to see how involved him and Arfield will be. Both have an important role to play and I wasn't trying to minimize their importance when I said they'd be complimentary.

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1 hour ago, PiedPilko said:

I dunno... Kaye really struggled in the first leg. Steph was just consistently very good in every game.

Kaye also had a Sunday league giveaway early on in the second leg whereas the stache was steady as prime Hutch. No contest IMO. 

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13 hours ago, PiedPilko said:

I dunno... Kaye really struggled in the first leg. Steph was just consistently very good in every game.

I agree that both were fine 2nd leg, but I will say: I am more concerned about having a midfield that is on the same page and works well together. We are not there yet. While I felt the backs did coordinate well with Borjan, who showed leadership, as did both Henry and Vitoria (speaking of the vets), we did not get that yet from the mids. 

IMO having either Hutch or Arfield in the middle, or even Hoillet playing back, with their experience and wiliness, would favour the talents of both or either MAK and Eustaquio.

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I know people give Piette flack but I think his play is comforting to the other two MFs in that Piette's primarily role is to put out fires so the other CMs can be more free to do their thing. When Kaye or Osorio have to be too focused on two-way play it's notable their play suffers a bit.

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On 6/19/2021 at 5:09 PM, CanadaFan123 said:

Kaye also had a Sunday league giveaway early on in the second leg whereas the stache was steady as prime Hutch. No contest IMO. 

The take away from last window regarding Kaye is that he can be outstanding or he can have a poor game. I imagine the LAFC fans would agree with that statement.

With Eustaquio it's becoming clear you basically get an 8 out of 10 every game. 

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MAK started against NYFC and was substituted off at half. I didnt watch, but according to LAFC supporters he was the worst player on the pitch. The online LAFC community is definitely not pro MAK at this point

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I have seen Kaye run hot and cold with his passing/possession but in his defence he is often trying to cut open a defence with an incisive but higher risk pass.  Even if he is not having the best of matches, he does have that element of changing the game with one little piece of passing brilliance to spring a forward for a goal.

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On 6/21/2021 at 3:49 PM, Floortom said:

MAK started against NYFC and was substituted off at half. I didnt watch...

Was it because he injured himself?

He was listed as questionable going into tonight's LAFC match and ultimately left out of the lineup:

https://www.lafc.com/news/player-availability-report-lafc-vs-fc-dallas-6-23-21

Maybe another player that shouldn't start the first match of the Gold Cup if selected.

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10 minutes ago, N1ckbr0wn said:

The LAFC fans have fully turned on Mark.. all LAFC posts, anything he posts. It’s got to the point where he limits who can comment on his social media.

he needs out of LA.

They’re all celebrating his departure for the Gold Cup..

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13 minutes ago, N1ckbr0wn said:

The LAFC fans have fully turned on Mark.. all LAFC posts, anything he posts. It’s got to the point where he limits who can comment on his social media.

he needs out of LA.

I wonder if any of these guys give a rats ass about some vocal minority on social media??  His coach doesnt, Herdman doesnt.  He had some very nice play for us last go round.  I wonder how much of the hate he gets is from his opinions on social issues and has nothing to do with his soccer.  

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