WATCH: Another Game, Another Molino Assist

DDH-aHmUMAAHy7P.jpg

Trinidad and Tobago midfielder Kevin Molino adds to his assists tally with another one against the Vancouver Whitecaps.

Down 2-0 early in the 2nd half, Molino helped mount a comeback run for the Loons, crossing the ball into the box and delivered it to defender Fransisco Calvo, heading it downwards and into goal, right past Goalkeeper David Ousted.

That makes 5 assists for Molino in his first season and 2 in back-to-back games. Currently the game is tied up 2-2 late in the 2nd half.

 

 

Advertisements

WATCH: Molino Through-Ball Leads to Ramirez Goal

DC5XK8uU0AAVARL

Kevin Molino follows up a bitter-sweet run of performances over the International Break with his 4th assist of the season against the Portland Timbers on Thursday.

After receiving the ball, Molino beats the defender, Alvas Powell, going right, sees Christian Ramirez alongside the last defender, and delivers it to the striker, beating the offside trap and has him in prime real estate with nobody around him. Ramirez had time to stop the ball on his right foot, have it rise up and flicking it into the goal on the same foot, beating Portland Timbers keeper Jeff Attinella.

Molino impacted the game earlier in the first half when his headed attempt from a corner forced Attinella to force it over the bar.

Video Link: https://streamable.com/s/kje24/dnmwjk

Just a few minutes later he had a “hockey assist” to this own goal

Molino now has 4 assists to go along with 5 goals in his first season with Minnesota United, who are sitting 9th in the Western Conference but 3 points out of the final playoff spot. The Loons next game is against the Vancouver Whitecaps today at 8:00 pm.

Jones Stars Out, Molino Capitalizes and Williams Gets The Nod in Week 3 of MLS

C7YXqNYU0AY6O0v.jpg

Three of the Soca Warriors were in acton over the weekend as Mekeil Williams got his first start of the season, Kevin Molino is on the score sheet for the 2nd week in a row and Joevin Jones puts on another great performance.

 

Mekeil Williams RB Colorado Rapids

Mekeil Williams got the start on Saturday against a struggling Minnesota United team after defender Axel Sjöberg went down with a hamstring injury and would be out 6-8 weeks. His first start could’ve gone better for the Soca Warrior defender. According to Whoscored.com,  he made 4 total tackles and picked up 2 fouls, including a yellow card on the defensive side, and made 47 passes with a 74.5% passing percentage. 4 of those were crosses, and 6 long balls, one that found a teammate.

Despite showing poise on the defensive end and an eye for taking the ball down the touchline, he still had his shaky moments:

mekeilwilliams.gif

Look at the top of the gif. You see that he’s beaten already. Then Venegas makes his cut and leaves Williams in the dust, giving him the space he needs to get the cross off. Lucky for the Rapids, Christian Ramirez couldn’t connect and finish off the goal.

Another moment was when Williams tried to go for the ball when a Minnesota player had it on the touch line. Studs connected and that got him a card.

This final moment here had me befuddled:

mekeilwilliams.gif

Look at the near side of the box. This collision here between Williams and Collen Warner, to me, shouldn’t warrant a penalty. While Williams was trying to engage, his and Warner’s feet just got tangled up. Was it intentional? To me it didn’t seem so, but it was an unlucky break for Williams that it resulted in Molino converting it from the spot.

All in all, it was an up and down day for Williams. Hopefully he stays in the main lineup and keeps at it to impress the coaches to keep him there until Sjöberg comes back or use this as an opportunity to audition himself for other teams around the league.


 

Kevin Molino MID Minnesota United F.C.

Molino’s probably glad that the international break has come around because I don’t he could take the cold (or the bad Minnesota defense) anymore.

It’s not his fault that the Loons are 0-1-2 and have allowed the most goals in the league so far (13) but that’s usually the case for an expansion side (don’t tell Atlanta United that). I still think that Molino could try to get himself more involved in the game. It’s not like I don’t he’s not involved, it’s just that I don’t notice hime. Sometimes I just don’t see him whenever I watch the Minnesota games, he’s just seems invisible (especially last week in the snow, I couldn’t see anyone). It’s not a knock on Molino and I don’t want it to be taken the wrong way. The man is the reason why I got into the MLS, and to highlight the Soca Warriors players in the MLS. But looking at the stats, he is doing a decent job at incorporating himself in the game and doing what he can to get this fledgling franchise to some victories.

According to Whoscored.com however, stats show that he had 43 touches on the ball with a passing percentage of 76%. One of his passes into the box resulted in a tangling of legs between Williams and Warner, where Molino managed to convert his 2nd spot kick in consecutive weeks.

With international duty calling, we’re glad to have him back on the Soca Warriors side for the WCQ matches against Panama and Mexico and we hope that his presence could better impact the games

Also, great gif MNUFC👌🏾:

Highlights:


 

Joevin Jones LB/LW Seattle Sounders

Game day .. time to defend our 🏆💚💙

A post shared by Joevin Jones (@joe_v_33) on

Joevin Jones man. It’s gonna come where I’m just going to say the same things about him week after week.

The man was spectacular yet again with an assist, a key cross that resulted in a goal and a shot on goal, to go along with completing 76% passes, connecting on 3 of 6 long balls (Whoscored.com), which with good defensive performance gets him a 7.2 match rating.

Now let’s watch in awe at his highlights as he returns home for the WCQs, starting with this:

The meg, the cross, the header. @j.morris13 finishes a slick move for @soundersfc! 🔥

A post shared by Major League Soccer (@mls) on

Bruh!

I blame Lodeiro for this. He pushes that ball so far out but Jones just has the pace to catch up to it to keep the play alive, then just has the awareness to know where the goal line is and his defender, leaving him no choice but to fill the gap left by the defender’s legs:

jonesnutmeg.gif

I feel bad just watching this.

Let’s take you to his assist which I’m pretty sure was not planned:

jones assist.gif

He basically takes a shot from outside of the box, takes a deflection off of Harry Shipp and it rolls in with the keeper just as bewildered as I am.

jonesassistaerial.gif

Now to me that seems hard, re-directing a shot with that kind of velocity to curve it enough to skinny past the post, but with Joevin, anything’s possible.


 

Well the international break is this week which means no MLS action for any of the T&T players (except Shannon Gomez) but I hope to be in attendance to root for our Soca Warriors on Friday and Tuesday for our home games against Panama and Mexico. With Molino making his return and Joevin Jones’ recent run of form, I can expect positive results for our T&T football squad.

Three Ways That Molino Could Line Up in Minnesota’s Attack

Expansion side Minnesota United FC paid a king’s ransom to get winger/attacking midfielder Kevin Molino away from Orlando City SC and so far, at least in pre-season play, he’s been worth every penny. In three pre-season starts he has tallied 3 goals and, although not registering any official assists, he has been creating opportunities to help his teammates in the build-up of play for goal-scoring opportunities.

dd4eda10501c30294a84ea9bd43954b2.png

Last season he was Goal USA’s Comeback Player of the year, coming back from a torn ACL to score 11 goals and provide 8 assists in 26 starts. This season, he looks to be the face of a fledgling franchise and improve on those numbers in a familiar system with former Orlando City coach Adrian Heath. With Minnesota United’s inaugural season approaching, I’m going to look at three possible roles that the Trinidad and Tobago player could play in the Twin Cities.

Out Wide as a Forward (Left or Right) in a 4-3-3: The main reason that Adrian Heath wanted Molino, and why he’s such a dangerous attacking threat, is his ability to play anywhere from the wings to the attacking midfield. While he’s more effective at CAM, Heath has been playing Molino on the left side of the pitch as a forward in a 4-3-3 against Vancouver. Back in Orlando, because Kaka was the no.10, Molino was used a lot on the right side. In terms of distribution, he doesn’t whip in a lot of crosses from the wide areas, preferring more to penetrate from the left or right side of the technical area, and use the attention that he attracts to make the pass to an open attacker.

molino-winger

According to Squawka, he created 13.2% of chances from in the technical area, so if he can’t find a way to score from the wing, he has the vision to look for the open man; and with him looking to be the main man that opposing coaches will be looking to gameplan around, there should be a lot of chances to make his teammates capitalise on those opportunities. [https://streamable.com/826pr%5D

 

Behind the Striker in a 4-2-1-3/4-3-1-2

This where I rather see Molino: playing behind the striker as an attacking midfielder, playing in the hole and exploiting what-ever real estate is in front of him and delivering the key ball to either Cristian Ramirez or rookie Abu Danladi, whoever gets the start on match day, or maybe even both if Heath wants to play two strikers up front. molino-amc Coach Heath would look to go offense heavy while creating build-up from possession. Molino created the majority of his chances from the area between the halfway line to the opponent’s technical area (55.3% according to Squawka). So now defenders have a choice when Molino’s in the hole: go out to to meet Molino and risk giving up space behind them for a cutting winger or finding the striker ahead of him, or stay back to cover the flanks but allow Molino to exploit the space. [https://streamable.com/r6rno%5D

He could also play more as a second striker poaching for goals, which happens to be his specialty; most of his goals came off of deflected efforts in the box, and he’s such an instinctive player. When there’s confusion after the first effort, Molino always seems to either be the calmest man in the box, guiding the loose ball into the net or just come out of nowhere to put it in the auld onion bag.

Up front in a 4-3-3:
This might be a bit of a stretch but why not? Although I never saw him play in the middle and although he may not be a traditional centre-forward, he certainly has the height (he’s 5’11”) to head in crosses and the strength to play in the box, fend off defenders and find players in space to capitalise on goal-scoring opportunities. Is he Kenwyne Jones? Nah (but he’s better. Jk.Well he is…you know what I mean), but could make plays for you in the box. 

molino-striker

Heath has good depth at the forward role with Johan Venegas slated to start after extensive minutes during pre-season, as well as Christian Ramirez and #1 Draft pick Abu Danladi in the reserves, but if injuries arise, or if Heath wants to try something different, I wouldn’t put it past him to maybe play Molino as the centre forward, probably in short stints until he believes he’s a viable option. It could be favorable in counter-attacking situations with the extra speed coming from the centre-forward spot.

 

Kevin Molino Pre-Season Highlights (incomplete):

[https://streamable.com/agibj]