I never said Morgan Brian was better than Lavelle, although I believe Brian is the more complete MIDFIELDER, Lavelle is clearly a better attacker and a better overall player at this point. Brian and Lavelle are actually the only two people on the team who can both move the ball between lines and pass the ball not only with consistent accuracy, but with a creative and beneficial result. And yes, she is relatively skinny and weak, but no one is arguing for Brian to play CDM over Ertz. However, I do think the US is better off with 3 creative players who can be ball carriers in the midfield and leaving Ertz back (see Thailand game). Brian was a great CDM in the 4-4-2 with help, but the 4-3-3 CDM requires a more physical presence (Ertz), so although Brian doesn't play badly in that position (she does just as well with her strengths there as she does higher up the field), people have come to expect the CDM to be a physical beast, and when Brian doesn't show that, they write her off. In this formation, Morgan Brian should play where Horan is (#8). That would maximize all of her strengths and minimize her weaknesses, and she performed pretty well there on Sunday. To your point about stats - Everyone always brings up Brian's lack of goals and assists (especially over at Equalizer Soccer). What they fail to realize is 2 things: 1) Lack of goals and/or assists does not mean that a player does not contribute and does not mean that they are an "unimpressive" player. Morgan Brian significantly impacts the game in several other ways that are not immediately noticed when looking at G/A. Her ability to advance passes from the defense to the forwards or out wide, her off-ball movement to free up other players or herself for space/passes, the awareness she has to get goal side and to close off passing and dribbling lanes on defense, and her leadership directing passes/the defense are all factors of her game that go unnoticed unless you are actually paying attention to her in the game, but they are all very important. Lesser-known stats stats that she excels at are passing accuracy and tackle percentage. She is consistently one of the best passers on the team, and her tackle percentage is one of the best among the midfielders. G/A get all the glory, but those other stats are important as well. 2) Brian has had many, many assist opportunities that people just haven't converted on. In World Cup Qualifying she had 1 to Press, 1 to Lloyd, and 1 to Pugh (all in the same game). All were 1on1 with the goalkeeper and all were poor finishes. In the last game even she could've had 2 assists to Press and perhaps 1 assist to Lloyd. And those are just 2 games out of her 83. I'm sure there are numerous other instances where teammates have let her down in those situations.