Efrain Alvarez

Discussion in 'USA Men: News & Analysis' started by bsky22, Mar 3, 2019.

  1. IndividualEleven

    Mar 16, 2006
    What are realistic plus/minus columns for these things? After all, if the competing federation didn't care about the player in question, is that really a win?

    USSF outreach to players seems entirely coach-driven. JK was like an unethical college recruiter. He went harder than a mf in continuously contacting potential recruits to the NT. In '06, Arena expressed distain at that idea when it came to trying to flip Rossi. '17, he failed to cap JoGo who had wanted to play for the US.
     
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  2. Sebsasour

    Sebsasour Member+

    New Mexico United
    May 26, 2012
    Albuquerque NM
    Club:
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Castillo was called up to a cap tying World Cup Qualifier for Mexico and "lost his passport" so he couldn't take part. I believe Corona and Saucedo were getting interest from Mexico when they chose The US as well.

    Sometimes you're going to lose dual nationals. A guy may just prefer to play for another team, and will switch sides the second that team comes calling, There's not really a whole lot you can do about that.

    However, generally speaking we've still an incredible job of getting dual nats to come play for us. How many of these battles do we tend to lose?
     
  3. Sebsasour

    Sebsasour Member+

    New Mexico United
    May 26, 2012
    Albuquerque NM
    Club:
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    There was a ton of a recruiting when Bradley was in charge too. Guys like Castillo, Boyd, Jones, Corona, Diskerud, and Brooks were actually all recruited under Bradley.

    Even Bruce, in his short 10 month tenure managed to get one time switches out of Jesse Gonzalez and Kenny Saief
     
  4. btlove

    btlove Member

    Tottenham Hotspur
    United States
    Sep 29, 2017
    Maybe I can help. On your first point, you say “USMNT has always come out on top” I say who cares? There is always room for improvement. We see Mexico improving their recruiting efforts. We should too. Do you think when Kentucky gets the #1 recruiting class one year they don’t worry about it the next?

    You wonder why people are worrying about these dual nationals saying it is “beyond you” lol... the reason why people care is because despite “wanting to play for our biggest rivals” at one point they wanted to play for us. And now they don’t. Why?

    Just saying you are making a bunch of non points here. People want the USMNT to step up recruiting efforts. That doesn’t mean it’s Rongen’s fault. It doesn’t matter what scouts are showing up for which u14 girls game.

    All I care about is every other interview I hear with a young dual National it’s “yeah the last time I heard from the USMNT was last time I was called up.” I just DO NOT want to see that happening. But every time o bring it up it’s “but we’ve always done good! It’s not USSFs fault! The players heart was somewhere else!”

    It’s all just SO irrelevant.
     
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  5. Sebsasour

    Sebsasour Member+

    New Mexico United
    May 26, 2012
    Albuquerque NM
    Club:
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I don't think any Kentucky fans were calling John Callipari an incompetent recruiter simply because he lost out on Zion Williamson.

    If you want the US to do everything in it's power to snag a guy like Efrain, than I agree with you, but "It’s not USSFs fault! The players heart was somewhere else!” is a legitimate argument. If Efrain wants to play for Mexico, and Mexico is interested in him, there's only so much you can do.

    I also find the negativity around him odd, because we're probably a few years away from him making a permanent decision about his NT future, and US fans are already writing him off, because we lost one guy. They're ignoring the overall success we've had in this regard.

    What specifically do you mean by improving recruiting?
     
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  6. Clint Eastwood

    Clint Eastwood Member+

    Dec 23, 2003
    Somerville, MA
    Club:
    FC Dallas
    Shrug. I agree with you. All the USSF can do is continue showing these kids that they're valued and continue providing them opportunities. We can always try harder and do more. 100% of USMNT fans will be behind that. Mind you, we're not providing opportunities to them just because they're dual nationals. Its like folks who blame losing Gonzalez on Sarachan because he didn't call him up for that Portugal game with the full USMNT? Hello? He picked McKennie and Adams instead. It was the first cap with both of those players. How many full Mexican caps does Gonzalez have now? Oh that's right..............2. After an initial look they've also turned to other young players instead.

    We just recruited Edwin Lara and Ricardo Pepi back from Mexico. Folks assume we're doing nothing behind the scenes, but these types of recruiting cases occur in our favor all the time. So work is being done behind the scenes. I think the problem is that Tab Ramos as USYNT technical director can only do so much. This time of year he's preparing for the U20 World Cup. There was a recent shake up of the USYNT staff (until recently we had no full time U23 coach, U19 coach, U18 coach, or U17 coach. We had no goalkeeping coach on any youth level: boys or girls). Hires need to happen at all of those levels so that continuous recruiting of kids can happen. We just made a nice hire at the U17 level with Wicky. It'll now be his job to work on recruiting U17s. We can't expect Tab Ramos to scout, recruit, and coach. [Efrain Alvarez is a U17, but I wouldn't put him in that category. He now plays first team professional games, so that should be the USMNT coach and the imminent U23 coach.]
     
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  7. puttputtfc

    puttputtfc Member+

    Sep 7, 1999
    Us UMass alum have some colorful terms for Calipari.
     
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  8. btlove

    btlove Member

    Tottenham Hotspur
    United States
    Sep 29, 2017
    Well for a start I would like to stop hearing players say “I haven’t heard from the USSF since (insert last call-up). I’d like our federation to be in contact with all players not just dual nats.

    Maybe sometimes we come through with good recruiting (Lara/Pepi) but the fact remains that players still reference the fact that they aren’t contacted often. Maybe USSF just worries about player they consider higher risk of leaving? Not sure.

    But honestly it doesn’t matter. Like another poster said, it’s about creating a culture. Hopefully we have been in contact with Efrain this whole time. Before he left the program and after. I know if I were in charge I would have congratulated him on his first appearance/assist etc. I would be sending him updates on the state of the USSF and coaching infrastructure etc. even now. And if eventually he decided to permanently represent Mexico, I would wish him well and that would be the end of it.

    Maybe we do this kind of stuff for some players. But we don’t do it for all of them and that’s what I’d like to see.
     
  9. Jazzy Altidore

    Jazzy Altidore Member+

    Sep 2, 2009
    Club:
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Most of the battles we win have been one-sided, i.e., the player had little to no chance of joining the other team.
     
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  10. Susaeta

    Susaeta BigSoccer Supporter

    Apr 3, 2009
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    #110 Susaeta, Mar 11, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2019
    Players want to play for the best National team possible. So the US has lost guys like Rossi and Subotic when those players thought they had better options, and the US picked up players like Jermaine Jones and Edgar Castillo when it was clear the other federations had moved on. If you want to call that “winning” a recruiting battle, fair enough.

    I do think for all his faults, Klinsmann was a good recruiter.
     
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  11. WheezingUSASupport

    Dortmund
    United States
    Aug 28, 2017
    Zlatan just praised Efraín pretty openly as being easy to play with and the best talent in MLS.

    If Efraín keeps it up, do we think he gets a US call up later this year?

    Would we ever call him for the U17 WC?

    I’m unsure how our program thinks of a prospect like Efraín whose playing for Mexico, but he could be unsure who he wants to represent.
     
  12. bballshawn

    bballshawn Member+

    Feb 5, 2014
    Delaware
    Club:
    Philadelphia Union
    looks like he wants to play for mexico, /thread
     
  13. bct81

    bct81 Member+

    Mar 17, 2007
    Colorado (formerly northern Virginia)
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I am afraid is just another Rossi ... and if he feels the pull to play for the Tri Colores then so be it.

    I am happy he has developed in the Galaxy org.

    But if Tata was the US coach instead of GGG perhaps he would be willing to listen to Tata. I doubt he will listen to Berhalter.
     
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  14. grandinquisitor28

    Feb 11, 2002
    Nevada
    I don't get the sense of that, maybe I'm misremembering how it played out, but it seemed like another situation a bit like the Wrongen ones in the past where our U17 guys just totally botched the evaluation, and then parents and the Mexican fed, or both and Efrain himself immediately turned to other options. I don't think Rossi was ever getable in retrospect, this seems more like Subotic, where basically we did the one thing you can't do, alienate a top dual national that the other nations was more than ready to pounce upon immediately. I know some don't want wishy washy prospects anyway, but I view this like College Sports. Your recruit till the final bell. You don't let feelings, or getting butt hurt, get in the way of landing your recruit. Fight for Efrain. We need all the prospects we can get, as you could see w/the moribund options available when Jozy tired over the weekend. What options did he pull off the bench after we were getting nothing at Forward, and we're being overrun in the midfield? Freaking Zardes, Lovitz, and and Roldan. Recruit FTW, period.
     
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  15. Eleven Bravo

    Eleven Bravo Member+

    Atlanta United
    United States
    Jul 3, 2004
    SC
    Club:
    Atlanta Silverbacks
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I could be wrong, but Efrain strikes me as a player who won’t excel at the international level anyways.

    He’s chubby and slow.

    Not good for a winger at the international level.
     
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  16. GiallorossiYank

    GiallorossiYank Member+

    Jan 20, 2011
    NJ/Roma/Napoli
    Club:
    AS Roma
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Call him up, why not
     
  17. gogorath

    gogorath Member

    None
    United States
    May 12, 2019
    He's very skilled and I think he'll be a fine player.

    But I think there's enough questions about his work ethic and defensive effort level that I don't think he ever reaches his potential.

    Honestly, I don't see what makes him better than Alex Mendez and if he were playing for the US, people would be calling him a luxury player.
     
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  18. grandinquisitor28

    Feb 11, 2002
    Nevada
    Mendez. Man, go back and watch the Ukraine and Nigeria games and he just looks like a legit potential star. I’m praying Freiburg can round out his game in terms of defending and being full 90 match fit because he’s got ridiculous skill in the attack.
     
  19. bsky22

    bsky22 Member+

    Dec 8, 2003
    Thanks for this post. It shows clearly that there is a bias against Hispanic players. There is so much idiotic garbage in it.

    What questions are there about his work rate? I dont ever recall that being an issue. From I have seen and heard, Kleibans kids approach the game in a very professional manner. Can you find us a couple of examples.

    I dont know if he will be better than Mendez and not sure why you would compare them ither than they are Hispanic midfielders that played for Kleiban. They are very different players that impact the game in very different players... and actually quite complimentary.

    I don't understand this whole luxury player BS around here. We have many very incomplete players on our national team. Is not being a high work rate defensive player what makes a luxury player? That sounds like Bradley and Trapp. Do other deficiencies not make luxury players? what about attacking players who cant finish or have a horrendous touch? Are Arriola and Zardes luxury players. I could see us play both Mendez and Alvarez down the road and be very succesful.

    Here is the article. Not much in it about Efra's lack of professionalism.

    https://www.mlssoccer.com/post/2019...vic-everything-natural-playing-efrain-alvarez
     
  20. bsky22

    bsky22 Member+

    Dec 8, 2003
    Come on. He is a lazy Mexican American who is just a luxury player. I dont believe the stories about him really focusing on his defense at Freiburg.



     
  21. bsky22

    bsky22 Member+

    Dec 8, 2003
    I have been incredibly impressed when seeing Efra play. I think praise from Zlatan and Schelotto is worth listening to, especially when it is so high for a 17 yo. I cant believe every US fan doesnt want this kid in our program.

    There is a lot in here about his professionalism and how smart of a player he is. The Galaxy is about to play a 17 yo luxury player, but people are questioning if he would be good enough for the usmnt down the road???

    But coach Guillermo Barros Schelotto is finding it increasingly more difficult to leave teen phenom Efrain Alvarez off the field.

    “Every time he was on the field, he led to something,” Schelotto said following the Galaxy's training session Wednesday at Dignity Health Sports Park. “He's more professional, [has had] good experience, and I think he's better now than six months ago. Much better.

    “For that, I am thinking about he is starting next game [at home Friday against California Clasico rival San Jose Earthquakes]. He looks like a professional. He looks like [he's] ready.”

    “Every time he play, I feel like he needs to play more,” Schelotto said. “Even last game he play[ed] 90 minutes, because he's very important on the team. He [set up] a goal, he wants the ball, don't care if he lose [the ball], he try again. So it is like a professional.”

    “You have players that play football and you have players that think football,” said the Swede, who headed home Alvarez's cross to provide a 75th-minute lead over Toronto. “He’s a player that thinks football, and they're better players, because the guys that play football, they are trained to play football. The guys that think football, they are made to play football. That's a big difference.”

    Ibrahimovic said the first time he saw Alvarez on the field, during training last year, he “didn't say nothing to him. I just said, 'You need to lose five kilos before you come back.' And he came back losing that, and he was a totally different player.”

    He praised Alvarez for wanting to “take the initiative or take action,” said the Mexico U-17 national-teamer “dominates in the trainings” and “just needs to get game time, because that is what he is missing now.”

    “He's by far the biggest talent from everybody [in MLS],” Ibrahimovic said. “Because he thinks football. He has that football in him, and it's natural. It didn't come by him training or something. [Anyone can] have the training, the physical [work] and all those things that you put together [to become a better player], but you cannot have that football in you. He has it.

    “He goes on the field, and you see when he plays, he's all natural: the way he thinks, the way he moves the ball, the way he touches the ball. By far the best player in MLS. He just needs his game time, and he will show it also.”

    He said playing with Alvarez was “easy.”

    “Everything is natural,” he said. “You make the movements, and everything goes natural — it's like a domino effect. The ball comes when it's supposed to come. The timing, it comes in the right moments. It's just the chemistry [involved], it's natural. And with other, different players, it takes time, and you have to move different, you have to think different, take a different approach.

    “It's easier with a [thinking player like Alvarez]. But you don't have many of them, so while we have them, we should use them and enjoy them.”
     
  22. Baysider

    Baysider Member+

    Jul 16, 2004
    Santa Monica
    Club:
    Los Angeles Galaxy

    All these things can be true at the same time. He will have a couple of moments every game where he is exceptional because of his skill level and the fact that he see's the game so well. Aside from those moments, however, he is not exceptional. He's not going to be a good ball winner, he's not going to be quick in getting back on defense, he doesn't cover a lot of ground. If you have other people to fill those roles, that's fine, Alvarez brings something that they don't. But if you need someone to fill those roles, he's not your man. That limits the positions that he can play, which is why he's a luxury player (in contrast, Zardes isn't a luxury player, he's a desperation player, and that's a different thing).

    I've watched both Alvarez and Mendez play at the same time and they are different players. Both are talented, and neither are the energizer bunny, but you can see how they play different roles on the team and neither would be as good if you swapped their roles.
     
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  23. bsky22

    bsky22 Member+

    Dec 8, 2003
    I like your description of Zardes and hopefully we wont need to be desperate in the near future.

    A 17 yo is still maturing. We have mo idea what his physical tools in 5 years. Even if he doesnt mature, there should definitely be a spot for a player like Efra. A lot of people are calling for Pomykal so CP can move wide. I would much rather a player like Efra or Ledezma fill that role as more natural #10s. Pomykal and Mendez are more of #8s but do the job differently.

    If our first two central midfielders are Adam's and Mckennie, I dont think our third needs to be the strongest defender. Now that Hyndman is eligible for the national team, inwould have him as one of the attacking midfielders on the bench, but suspect these younger guys have a good chance of pushing him out sooner than later.
     
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  24. gogorath

    gogorath Member

    None
    United States
    May 12, 2019
    Oh, good lord. Between the accusations of racism and the wildly defensiveness of 4 posts in a row, I feel like I insulted Andrew Carleton in front of Adam Tash.

    But that said, thanks for posting the articles. It looks like Efrain is actually starting to take things more seriously, as evidenced by his coach saying his professionalism is upped in the last six months, that he lost weight in the last six months, etc.

    That's great to hear. I hope he succeeds. Everything I had heard before was that he wasn't the hardest worker on the pitch and had floated by on natural talent. Sometimes the switch flips, sometimes it doesn't.

    But that said, he still doesn't play defense much. I've watched 3-4 games with him this year, including last nights, and he simply doesn't defend much. He still floats a bit in the game. On both counts, he's young. But you can only have so many players on the pitch who don't actively defend and it shows against a team like San Jose where everyone works.

    So perhaps luxury player isn't the right words -- they are somewhat loaded. But you can only have so many guys who aren't good defenders. Perhaps Efra will get there or perhaps he will reach the level offensively where it doesn't matter.

    As for the comparison to Mendez, aside from being both Mexican-American, they are also both super skilled -- perhaps the two most skilled American players this side of CP, reasonably close in age, both played for the LA Galaxy, both tend to play attacking mid roles, neither is very good at defense, and both have a tendency to float in and out of the game at times.

    So, yeah, there's obvious reasons to compare them.

    Why are you so defensive and aggresssive? Have you ever had a discussion rather than just rant at people?
     
  25. bsky22

    bsky22 Member+

    Dec 8, 2003
    I have never heard that. You got a link?

    The strengths of the two are quite different with exception that both strike a very clean ball. Mendez plays deeper and is more of a distributor.

    2018 USL stats...
    Efra - 12G/3A/1238min
    Mendez - 1G/3A/406min
     

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