Rated 24th among the 24 under 24, Cristian Roldan’s rise from falling draft pick to regular starter earned recognition from MLSSoccer.com’s survey of media experts. The annual survey was previously “won” by Sounders Fredy Montero and DeAndre Yedlin. This year Jordan Morris is expected to be near the top.
MLS Soccer included quotes from three technical experts and all expect Roldan to improve.
“He’s a natural footballer. He will progress as he gains more and more games and more and more confidence in the league. I think he’ll develop as he matures. The one thing you could say is that his ability to penetrate, not just with his passes but with his runs, could be get better.”
Roldan is already part of Seattle’s transition to a younger core in 2017.
MLSsoccer rates players on;
- Technical: first touch, dribbling, shooting, heading
- Soccer IQ: positioning, reading game, situational understanding, tactical awareness
- Physical Attributes: balance, agility, speed, endurance, strength, vertical leap
- Personality: attitude, marketability, media savviness, charisma, intangibles
- Potential: improvability, ceiling, national team potential, potential transfer value
Roldan’s failures in the physical attributes section are why he fell in the draft. Seattle fans have started to see the youngster’s personality this year as he trolls his friends on the team.
In 2016 Cristian looks a bit like a young Osvaldo Alonso buzzing around the midfield destroying enemy attacks. He has also started to add some of the same passing tree that Alonso did in years two and three in MLS. Cristian also adds to the attack through his runs and a once-secret ability to head the ball.