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Yeah I think you are right. Given his size and frame you would probably peg him as a central target man when he has actually looked more like a potentially explosive wide forward and played best there.

I think he naturally has to adjust to a new level and there was a bit of culture shock there. He is playing against better and stronger players than he is used to but definitely showed improvement through the season. You could see it in some of his defensive work and some attacking bursts. As you say I think if he ends up pushing back to the middle or giving MDS the option to play him there he has to improve on his target man skills and winning the ball in the air there. 

The good news is he seems to look the best out wide right and if he continues to improve he will offer something different for the national team in contrast to our naturally left heavy set of attackers. 

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My first time watching this guy was at the CONCACAF U-20 tournament in 2018 and he did not impress me. Jordan Perruzza from that team looked like a much better player. But from the times I have seen him for the Whitecaps he looks like a completely different player. I am not sure if that is due to the fact that he developed, my scouting was off, he had a bad week, or if his game translates better to the pros. Now he is ahead of Perruzza (who I still like).

I agree there are virtues to playing him on the wing. If he becomes a versatile attacker that can play a number of positions in a number of styles then that would be great.

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Makes you wonder if TFC had called Perruza up to the big club for a stretch if his game might have progressed like Bair??  Once Hamilton was gone I was really hoping to see another young CDN striker come up.  Bair did seem like a different player last year compared to the u-20's and hopefully he turns it up another notch with more playing time this year.  

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12 minutes ago, Bison44 said:

Makes you wonder if TFC had called Perruza up to the big club for a stretch if his game might have progressed like Bair?? 

Keep in mind that Perruzza is two years younger than Bair. A direct comparison at this stage is a bit unfair.

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Like El DIego said, I rated Perruza higher than Bair now its flip flopped.  Not sure if another year of USL-1 is going to help him like the playing time with VAN did for Bair.  Come to think of it same goes for Okello, he was the real star for us at the u-20 tournie.  Sometimes all it takes is the coach to give you that chance and Bair certainly has made the most it with MDS.   

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No disrespect to this other player you guys are talking about. But before last year and playing in the MLS at 19. Bair scored 60 goals in 75 starts in the USSDA. I repeat 60 goals in 75 starts at the highest level of development soccer in North America. Those stats are beyond bonkers. So to suggest he just he just developing now

DEVELOPMENT ACADEMY
In his three seasons of DA league and cup tournament competition, Bair totaled 60 goals in 75 starts and 98 appearances for the WFC Residency U-16, U-18 and U-19 teams. Bair was a member of the U-18 side that finished second in 2016, and then helped the U-16 team to a fourth-place finish in the following year. In 2018, he helped the U-19’s to a fourth-place finish in the Academy Championship.

Edited by SpursFlu

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24 minutes ago, Shway said:

Peruzza 18, just had a season where he scored 15 goals in 24 USL League 1 games..... A lot higher level than USSDA. 

Sounds like a good player. I'm excited for him to get some minutes with TFC this year. Oh wait.. lol

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5 minutes ago, SpursFlu said:

Sounds like a good player. I'm excited for him to get some minutes with TFC this year. Oh wait.. lol

Right! ... Its the cost of being on a winning team 😜

Edited by Shway

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7 minutes ago, Shway said:

Right! ... Its the cost of being on a winning team 😜

I set you up for that one

But honestly I remember the player. He is good. Actually more of a traditional CF compared to Bair. He was slick and held the ball up nicely. Big body with finess.  He's good but as it turns out different players. Bair has a nice first touch and likes asking questions of the defense running at fullback.. Plays direct. He likes to crash the box and with his size has ability to anticipate situations and convert. 

I think as Canadian soccer fans we should start embracing the notion that we have a lot of good players

Edited by SpursFlu

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59 minutes ago, SpursFlu said:

No disrespect to this other player you guys are talking about. But before last year and playing in the MLS at 19. Bair scored 60 goals in 75 starts in the USSDA. I repeat 60 goals in 75 starts at the highest level of development soccer in North America. Those stats are beyond bonkers. So to suggest he just he just developing now

DEVELOPMENT ACADEMY
In his three seasons of DA league and cup tournament competition, Bair totaled 60 goals in 75 starts and 98 appearances for the WFC Residency U-16, U-18 and U-19 teams. Bair was a member of the U-18 side that finished second in 2016, and then helped the U-16 team to a fourth-place finish in the following year. In 2018, he helped the U-19’s to a fourth-place finish in the Academy Championship.

This got me interested in how his peers did at that level and boy, a lot of goals get scored in the USSDA. Multiple guys at or over a goal a game. I don't mean to say this to disparage Bair, those are still very good numbers, but I think it must be hard to evaluate guys in that league. There are so many teams that the disparity between teams must be great at times. I can't say if Bair has improved dramatically, steadily, etc. as I never watched him in the USSDA (and frankly, I still haven't seen a lot of him). All I can say is that he's improved from the limited observation I have had.

Anyway, I didn't want to turn this into a comparison between Bair and Perruzza. I only mentioned Perruzza because that was my only contemporary barometer when I first watched Bair. In any case, they are completely different attackers that developed in different systems and are different ages, so it is kinda silly to compare them in the first place.

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7 hours ago, SpursFlu said:

Sounds like a good player. I'm excited for him to get some minutes with TFC this year. Oh wait.. lol

I suspect he will get loaned out to a USL or maybe a CPL side now that the Fury are gone.  Would be good for his development to play a full year at a step above League 1. Same goes for Nelson in my opinion although he might benefit from another year at League 1 level. 

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9 hours ago, SpursFlu said:

In his three seasons of DA league and cup tournament competition, Bair totaled 60 goals in 75 starts and 98 appearances for the WFC Residency U-16, U-18 and U-19 teams. Bair was a member of the U-18 side that finished second in 2016, and then helped the U-16 team to a fourth-place finish in the following year. In 2018, he helped the U-19’s to a fourth-place finish in the Academy Championship.

Could be wrong, but I think those kind of stats aren't really abnormal in the USSDA. Think I've seen other young Canadian players in the past with a crazy scoring record but never heard of again.

8 hours ago, SpursFlu said:

Sounds like a good player. I'm excited for him to get some minutes with TFC this year. Oh wait.. lol

I always rated him higher than Akinola, who I never felt was deserving of a call up tbh. He's a Better finisher and more composed infront of the net. Even when tfc2 was playing in USLC, he was on pace to outscoring Akinola with MUCH fewer games played and younger.

Would be nice to see him tried out as a depth player. I think Perruzza is a bit of a crap shoot. With the right kind of deliveries to him, he could be a potential goalscorer.

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11 hours ago, Colliedor said:

Could be wrong, but I think those kind of stats aren't really abnormal in the USSDA. Think I've seen other young Canadian players in the past with a crazy scoring record but never heard of again.

Not sure if it was USSDA, but both Caleb Clarke and Brody Huitema had really good pre-professional stats.

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40 minutes ago, Colliedor said:

Kinda odd imo. I really don't think he's ready for that kind of jump.

Nobody said he was ready. They’re saying that he’s being tracked or that he has the potential 

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Posted (edited)

I would say they probably look at Cyle Larin and say Theo looks to have a way higher ceiling. And as I've said in the past, I dont see a huge if any difference between Belgium and MLS. I would also say the same about lower end Dutch teams. It's a better trampoline in to a top 5 league as it's more reliable and is a nice transition in to adapting to living and playing in Europe 

Edited by SpursFlu

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4 minutes ago, SpursFlu said:

I would say they probably look at Cyle Larin and say Theo looks to have a way higher ceiling. And as I've said in the past, I dont see a huge if any difference between Belgium and MLS. I would also say the same about lower end Dutch teams. It's a better trampoline in to a top 5 league as it's more reliable and is a nice transition in to adapting to living and playing in Europe 

I think the teams in Belgium and especially in Holland that play regularly in Europe will have a lot more quality and especially depth, but I don't think a team like Venlo or Sittard or Kortrijk or Sint Truiden is better than your average MLS side. Different story even just 5 years ago.

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Posted (edited)

I'm not big on, you play in league A so you are B. And you play in league C so you are D. It's kinda dumb. If it was true every game would end 1-1. You have a 6'4 kid who has a pretty complete game and when he plays, he scores. I think he would move to either of those leagues and be a big contributor within a year. The more analytical types can jump in but isn't there a sweet spot for players to really cash in on them. Isn't it like 22-24 or something 

Edited by SpursFlu

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2 hours ago, SpursFlu said:

I would say they probably look at Cyle Larin and say Theo looks to have a way higher ceiling.

Larin was super highly rated, way more hyped than Theo.  He was on everyone’s radar.  Let’s not forget that on Larin’s age 20 season he scored 18 goals in MLS.  Theo is probably going to be a backup in his age 20 season.

 

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6 minutes ago, Bison44 said:

If Bair turns into a over a dozen goals per year, gets to a MLS all star game, is a consistent starter for Vancouver I'm sure everyone will be happy.  

I dont think we'll ever know. I'm pretty sure he'll be gone this summer

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Posted (edited)

Bair is weird. It seems Vancouver want him as a winger despite his 6'5 size. Despite that he's not looked out of place.

 

For the record at the moment I rate Ongaro higher than Bair as a striker. That's only because Ongaro is very good technically and just needs to learn his physically, when he does he'll be the best striker in the CPL, and that Bair plays out wide at club level.

Edited by VinceA

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