Jalen Robinson’s career with D.C. United has been on a slow but steady trajectory. After spending most of his first two seasons on loan in the USL (with Richmond and Arizona), he made four appearances in 2016 and upped that to 7 appearances in 2017. He doubled both his starts and his minutes, and seems to have grown in Ben Olsen’s estimation throughout his time on the team.
Last season, he was defined by his play against New York City FC, helping to limit their high powered attack. This year, he started almost all of his games after August, primarily playing with Kofi Opare while Steve Birnbaum was dealing with concussion issues. Thrown in near the end of a bad season, Robinson had good moments and shaky moments, but never looked lost and always looked like someone who just needs more time.
The team does seem invested in Robinson’s future, however. Recently news came out that both Robinson and Patrick Mullins will spend a few weeks with Swansea City of the Premier League this offseason. That will be invaluable experience for both of them, and hopefully it will lead to Robinson coming back and being ready to challenge, and being believed in enough by the coaching staff to challenge, for a regular spot in the team and regular time off the bench.
I am fairly certain the team is going to invest in a high-priced center back to immediately start and to challenge everyone on the team, and I hope that player can help Robinson elevate his game even further and help him become an MLS mainstay. I do think he has it in him.
All that being said, I call the (pretty easy) question:
Do you want Jalen Robinson back for the 2018 season?
This poll is closed