As this week rolls on, MLSSoccer.com continues to lay out their top 24 players under the age of 24. Yesterday Walker Zimmerman made his debut on the list at #11 in this year’s rankings. Today we got two more FC Dallas players on the mark with Jesse Gonzalez coming in at number 9 and Carlos Gruezo at number 8.
There is really only one more FC Dallas player left on the list that can be ranked as we wait to see where Kellyn Acosta lands in the top 5 tomorrow.
Gonzalez being ranked was the real shocker to me this year given the limited number of games that we’ve seen him in between the pipes. The Homegrown keeper has only logged 540 minutes this season in six total starts.
Here is what some of the scouts had to say about Gonzalez:
“For a player of his age, for him to be this casual on the ball with pressure is certainly a nice quality to have. As far as shot-stopping, he certainly can make those plays. And for a young kid with that frame, I think he’ll only get stronger.”
“I would say if there’s one critique, it’s almost that he’s too casual, which is very rare with a player that young.”
Gruezo was a lock to be in the top 10 in my mind, though coming in at number 8 seems a bit low. The Ecuadorian has been killer for FCD this season in the midfield where he has logged 1880 minutes in 23 games.
Here is what some of the scouts had to say about Gruezo:
“He’s a top, top player. Anyone who is one of the youngest in the World Cup is a talent. He’s played for the national team at such a young age. What I’ve been impressed with is that he’s come here from Europe at such a young age and been excellent game after game after game. He seems like he has a workman-like mentality, and that’s not always the case [for players] coming from Ecuador. Maybe he’s learned that in Germany. He has all the attributes in midfield.”
“When they’re down, he doesn’t go and hide. He wants to get on the ball and play forward to [Mauro Diaz] and push the ball between the lines. I’ve been very impressed with him, and I am surprised [Stuttgart] let him go. Arguably the most talented young player in the league for me.”
What do you make of these rankings?