I don’t know why I think I can outmanage Adrian Heath, but I am back with another stab at predicting the lineup for the upcoming match. I went a little different with this one:
Behold! My modifed 4-2-2-2.
This is probably the most thought I have put into creating a lineup. Not only did I think about who should play, but I adjusted where they should line up on the field. I only made one change from the lineup that Minnesota United rolled out the last two weeks, but I think it is a big one.
Because of the challenge that Dom Dwyer poses to any defense, I (sadly) had to avoid my favored three man backline for the four man look that MNUFC has stuck with. The only change I made was pulling Brent Kallman and Francisco Calvo deeper in the defensive third to cope with Dwyer.
I kept the pairing of Sam Cronin and Ibson in the center of the midfield, but I pulled Cronin back a bit. Not only because of Dwyer and Sporting Kansas City, but because Ibson has a tendency to pull into attack and centrally. This gives the Loons a natural #6 player to recover for any offense that Ibson tries to start.
I could easily see Ibson sat though, as Andy Greder of the Pioneer Press tweeted this:
#MNUFC coach Adrian Heath said there could be changes to starting XI Sunday vs. Sporting KC, with Rasmus Schuller (hip) to be available.— Andy Greder (@andygreder) May 5, 2017
But, I will stick with the Brazilian center midfielder for now. Could see him sat, but without insider knowledge on Rasmus Schuller’s hip health, I will air on the side of caution.
The biggest change is in attack. Instead of Christian Ramirez being the lone striker, I pulled him over to play more of a central forward/left striker role. This allows him to be nearer to his buddy, Miguel Ibarra, and still a target man. I then put Kevin Molino on the right, but I expect him to pull centrally (like Ibson). So, I factored that in. Instead of being in a role more similar to a winger, I pulled him inwards with the hopes he would take on the #10 role that is more suited for his ability.
The big change... I sat Johan Venegas in favor of Abu Danladi. Abu looked pretty good in his last appearance against San Jose. Not gamechangingly good, but he showed some flashes that justify his status as first overall pick. I think it is time for the Ghanaian International to start.
What do you think? Am I getting more or less crazy? Let us know below!