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Brad Evans New Role

<strong>Brad Evans While The Left Mid?</strong> He's down in that corner. You can hardly see him. During the run of play he was the left mid.
Brad Evans While The Left Mid? He's down in that corner. You can hardly see him. During the run of play he was the left mid.

Brad Evans play as a right mid started a little while ago. It was due to the strong play of Andy Rose and the benching of Fredy Montero and then just continued, except for those times when he was used at right back or at center mid. He's even popped up at left mid for a bit. There was a theory, one I really wanted to be true because I like fun tactical stuff and I like how Evans plays, that he was now being used as a roving midfielder. It's a fun narrative. It's wrong, but fun.

Whenever Evans moved to a different spot (say when he earned the assist on Eddie Johnson's goal) a player did fill his old space. In the case of that move it was Mauro Rosales who had started a breakaway, reset it and then followed through when Osvaldo Alonso kept the fast-break going. In fact the two switched for about two minutes and Evans touched the ball more than Rosales.

There will be times when Brad Evans is going to interchange during games. His flexibility and the flexibility of the new "Band of Four" (Left Mid, Tiffert, Montero, Rosales) mean that when Evans plays he will be in different spaces through a fairly conventional interchange. His soccer brain is one of his greatest, if not greatest, asset. That means when they interchange he'll be right where he needs to be to make the play (video). He knows the roles, not just his role. He can also sit back during an Alonso run forward. He's versatile.That's just during the games.

His flexibility also means that he will be able to start as a right back, right mid, center mid of either type, left mid and even the rare times at forward. His positioning in any of those spaces will be strong. It will not be a like-for-like replacement. In the attacking positions he's generally a more defensive player. He isn't as fast. He doesn't have the range of passes that Tiffert and Rosales have. He isn't the finisher that the forwards are. But he does offer variety and an ability to coach the team a bit.

Fact is that Brad Evans is going to play a lot. He's even going to start a lot. If we short hand for what Christian Tiffert offers as "Super Brad Evans" then maybe what Brad Evans is becoming is a "Super Roger Levesque." That role and positional flexibility without major weaknesses in soccer tools offers a lot to a coach. Saturday was just another example of what Evans does well.

His release from defense in that deadball, was perfect. He didn't slow when Rosales pulled the ball back. He kept the sprint going because there was no defender in the way. As the Vancouver defense prepared to defend against a triangle of Johnson, Montero and Rosales they were not ready for the flash of a left mid down the right touchline. That's Brad Evans. It was a great run, a strong low cross and all because of the way he reads the game. It just wasn't an example of a roving midfielder, but that's OK too.

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