By now, you know how we do things here around SB Nation. We collaborate and help each other out. Even this D.C. United site and our counterparts covering the New York Red Bulls, Once a Metro. So when I reached out to their Managing Editor Matt Coyne to ask about Fabian Espindola, whom D.C. United selected with the first pick in the first round of the second stage of the 2013 Re-Entry Process (Huff. Puff.), he gave me the following scouting report.
In my one year of watching Fabian Espindola operate the one word that comes to mind is "streaky." Now when I say "streaky" a lot of people will think, "Well, yeah, strikers are streaky. So what?" But Espindola's streakiness is prolific.
When he's on, he's on. He'll bring energy, he'll run at defenders, he'll draw penalties and he'll pounce on loose balls. It's the troughs that are the issue. They're so low, you wonder if the peaks are even worth it at all. During those low points, Espindola will take one touch too many (something he'll be accused of even when he's playing well), hold on to the ball for too long and singlehandedly kill attacks. In the playoff game against the Houston Dynamo, I'd never seen so many promising attacks die, and a lot of that, but not all of it, was down to Espindola.
Don't be surprised if in December 2014, you're looking down D.C United's scoring leaders and you see Espindola near the top. At that point, only remembering Espindola's long lean periods, you'll have to remind yourself that he's actually a pretty decent player, good for a handful of goals.
But, hey, it's got to be an upgrade for you guys, right? Since nothing could possibly be worse than last year?
Ignoring his obligatory barb at the end - which, y'know, ain't wrong - what do y'all think? We know what we're getting with the former RSL and Red Bulls attacker, the good and the bad. So, right now, where do you see Espindola fitting on Ben Olsen's depth chart?
- D.C. United takes Fabian Espindola and Nana Attakora in the second stage of the Re-Entry Draft
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- Eddie Johnson is now a member of D.C. United. [UPDATED - It's official.]