Previously we discussed what I thought is the best approach for Toronto FC in this year’s MLS 2012 Superdraft: to trade the draft pick for an established central defender. However, since that might not be possible, let’s take a look at who Toronto might pick with their fourth overall pick in the draft.
Their position of need, as expressed by Paul Mariner, is the center of defense. At left fullback TFC already have Ashtone Morgan and Mikael Yourassowsky and at right back it is expected that both Richard Eckersley and Jeremy Hall will be ready come time for CONCACAF Champions League play. The midfield is crammed as well, with most of the academy talent fighting for whatever spots open during the year.
So clearly it would be foolish for TFC to draft at any position other than striker or center half. A lot of mock drafts have Mariner and Winter selecting Kelyn Rowe at the #4 slot, who is more of an attacking midfielder. With consensus first and second picks Andrew Wenger and Darren Mattocks both having gone by the time TFC draft, they will be looking at Matt Hedges as the next best available defender.
A lot of mock draft have Toronto going after Austin Berry with the #12 pick acquired in the infamous trade with New York last year. Other options are Toronto going after forward Billy Schuler with the #4 pick.
While I don’t have much faith in the draft, I still remember that Joao Plata was a steal in the second round.