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Player Profile: #27 Eriq Zavaleta

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The Hoosier spent his year as a Goat and is now out of contract. His position in MLS seems settled, as a centerback.

Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

Entering 2014 there were a couple questions surrounding Eriq Zavaleta. Is he a centerback or a forward? Does he have a future with the Sounders? Both of those were answered, kind of. He went on loan to Chivas USA where he showed that he is capable of rotational level MLS CB play. When he came back to Seattle Sounders FC his contract was over. Now he's a free agent within MLS and his future is unknown.

Offense:

Zavaleta is a good short passer for a central defender. He should be a decent scoring threat as well, considering his success as a college forward. Needs to be better with threatening passes and as a set-piece target.

Defense:

Still young and learning the position, Eriq's on-ball defense was passable. Seems to have some trouble reading plays, but that should improve. Can mark on set-pieces, but could develop better timing in the air.

Physique:

Could use a bit more bulk. His frame is suited for the league. Speed is neither an advantage, nor disadvantage. Not shy from contact.

Best Case 2015:

Zavaleta should be in a team's plans as a rotational CB. He already did and he's just 22. His contract was a bit high after graduating from the Generation Adidas program. If he's in Seattle he could wind up as a 3rd CB, but is more likely to get minutes elsewhere.