By most accounts, Jordan Morris has handled his first professional season reasonably well. He's already set the Seattle Sounders rookie record for goals in a season with five and has been the team's most consistent goal-scoring threat.
But to the surprise of many, he was left off the United States Copa America team. USMNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has previously said the decision essentially came down to one between Morris and Chris Wondolowski.
In talking to the Wall Street Journal, Klinsmann went a bit more in depth on Morris' perceived progression.
"Jordan knows he has to become a two-way player, has to learn [to deal with] high pressure, how to defend and how to make decisions, when to pass and when to cross. He has to improve his left foot, his aerial game. There are many areas where he knows, 'I’ve got to work on it.' Then you can only see that process over the next couple of years. He’s on that path where he is learning to make his own decisions. He’s learning to take things into his own hands."
Klinsmann also suggests he'd like to see Morris get a bit more bite to his game, expressing some hope that he'll look at Clint Dempsey as direct competition for his position.
It should be said that Klinsmann's assessment of Morris isn't particularly harsh, especially in light of the way he talks about some other young Americans in this interview. And Klinsmann probably has a fair point about Morris, too. All but one of Morris' goals have come with his right foot, he's not been particularly dangerous in the air or off the dribble and hasn't shown much playmaking ability yet.
Of course, there's plenty of time for those elements to develop.