Monday, August 5, 2013
Can Clint Dempsey, Eddie Johnson Surpass Donovan, Beckham as Greatest MLS Tandem Ever?
Dempsey's return to U.S. club soccer is a coup for MLS. He will be a big draw. His skill level is superb, he makes plenty of goals and he has swagger.
The man lost in this big transfer of Dempsey to Seattle is the other great player for the Sounders, Eddie Johnson, who is also skilled, scores plenty and has pizzazz. Dempsey and Johnson are good friends and know each other's games well from the U.S. Men's National team and from time shared together with Fulham of the EPL.
Dempsey is already a superstar and considered by many to be the U.S.'s best player. Johnson is beginning to make bigger strides towards super stardom in the U.S. sports world. And, he could end up being a starting striker on the U.S. World Cup team.
Brilliant pairs are the hottest of items for MLS. Two great scoring players who play well together with their own styles are the best draw MLS has to attract more fandom, new audiences and to make great television.
Landon Donovan and David Beckham, until now, seemed to be the best tandem in MLS history.
They were ahead of other excellent duos because of their ability to make great set plays, their passing and assists (long and short ones) and because they played in Hollywood.
See 'Great MLS Scoring Duos' from the past.
It was the L.A. scene that provided the backdrop for their mini-dynasty. Fans were intrigued and were watching to see them both. Most of the time, Donovan and Beckham delivered.
Now, it's Seattle's turn. They want a dynasty.
It feels right for Dempsey to play in Seattle. His talents deserve to be witnessed by the masses who come and see every home game. Demps, Johnson and the most raging fans in the country seem like the right fit.
Seattle had Fredy Montero in past years, helping to win multiple U.S. Open Cups and playing CONCACAF Champions League regularly. But, Montero wounded up being loaned out before this season. Seattle was feeling Montero's loss, as they currently sit outside the playoff picture.
Dempsey will try to be the catalyst to put the Sounders on a run to the playoffs and help them to capture their first MLS championship.
The Sounders will be a lot of fun to watch from here on out. Adding Dempsey to the roster has made the Seattle soccer scene that much more grungy than it already was.