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J.R. Eskilson: Solid Marks For The Brotherly Game, Philadelphia Union In SB Nation Mock 2011 MLS SuperDraft



The Brotherly Game was lucky enough to secure the opinion of's J.R. Eskilson. Known as @NCAAsoccer on Twitter, Eskilson is one of the more listened to voices in the world of American collegiate soccer. Here's what Eskilson had to say about my selections of Michael Tetteh (left back, USCB) and Levi Houapeu (forward/midfielder, UCMB) during the SB Nation 2011 Mock SuperDraft.

Philadelphia Union (Scott Kessler) B

Michael Tetteh (UCSB), Levi Houapeu (UMBC)

I understand the logic behind the Tetteh selection because he could be great for that defense. However, for a player who spent most of the 2010 season on the trainer's table, it is a reach. That said, Union probably won't find another left back in the draft with similar attributes to Tetteh so if they want him, they need to take him early. He has good speed and an excellent nose for the goal coming out of the back. When Tetteh was healthy, UCSB did not employ a true left midfielder so Tetteh would be left on an island out there usually defending against two players. Normally, he did well in the role and allowed UCSB a numbers advantage elsewhere on the field. Union may ask him to play a more traditional position in defense than he did in college, which could expose some of the tactical inadequacies in his game.

More after the jump.

Selecting Houapeu in the second round would be a huge bonus for the Union. Along with Tetteh, Houapeu has the speed necessary for the next level on the outside. Houapeu spent much of his collegiate career as a striker, but he may need to shift to outside midfield in MLS. His quickness will allow him to get around defenders and send in crosses for Seba Le Toux and Danny Mwanga. Think of him as the Union's version of Irving Garcia; he will be very valuable in Open Cup games.

I think later in the draft, you could see Philly take a chance on a keeper. Perhaps Joe Willis, a good size keeper with a lot of experience in college, but rumors prior to the combine had him potentially going abroad for work. Other possibilities for late round picks could be Steven Perry or Lebongang Pila.

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