Updated: Nov 19, 2022
It's mock draft time again! Our friends over at Soccer Dossier invited us to represent Gotham FC in their annual mock draft. First let's look at the picks.
1st Round: 1st
2nd Round: 1st
3rd: Traded to Orlando
4th Round: 1st
Nobody wants to have the season associated with getting the top pick in the draft but the advantage to Gotham is they don't have a roster with many holes in it. They don't necessarily need a player to come in right away and play. Let's look at three areas of need and what player Gotham could take with those picks.
Right now there are only two center backs on roster. Ali Krieger and Mandy Freeman. Ali Krieger is 38 and in the second year of a 2 year contract. Mandy Freeman is 27 and just signed a multi year contract to stay with the club. Gotham has yet to announce if they are bringing back Estelle Johnson, a free agent. Even if they do, Estelle is 34 years old. Gotham definitely needs to groom the next generation of center backs. The team does have an option year to decide on with rookie Kelly Ann Livingstone. A player with a lot of tools but didn't see minutes behind the three stalwarts and was injured through part of the season.
Gotham has plenty of attacking options. But very similar attacking options. Midge Purce, Taylor Smith, Ifeoma Onumonu are all players that are aggressive attackers who are direct. Onumonu is the only traditional number 9 in the group. The others are a hybrid winger/forwards. New coach Amoros relies heavily on attacking from wide areas. The game plan focuses on having a forward who can get behind the line into the gaps of the spread out defensive lines. There is a chance that Cameron Tucker can be that role player to spell Onumonu, but she is also a winger/forward. Although Purce and Taylor can play there, there should be added depth.
New coach Amoros utilizes a 4-3-3 where the outside forwards are nearly pinned to the sidelines. The formation relies heavily on wingers that can play balls behind and across. Very much like a Rapinoe or in Houston, Maria Sanchez. Paige Monaghan was the primary left winger last season. Paige is currently out of contract. Even if she resigns, she is another direct attacker who isn't known for deadly crosses and service from the outside. That leaves two options. Nahomi Kawasumi, a 37 year old legend of the game and the possibility of left footed Kristie Mewis with her great vision and touch on through balls taking up the role. Either way, I would like to see Gotham take a flyer on a later round draft pick who fills this role and build the player up.
Thoughts On Strategy:
The obvious answer here is to use the 1st round pick on Emily Madril from Florida State. A pro ready player who is already signed with the league. She played at Racing Louisville 2 team and the league signed her and sent her overseas until the draft. Signing her allowed her to keep her draft eligibility. Unless for some reason rising superstar Alyssa Thompson declares early Madril should be the unanimous top pick.
In the second round Gotham could look to add a big bodied forward who can get on the end of crosses and add a late game change of pace. Possibility of Messiah Bright from TCU being available there.
There is also the possibility that Flores and Jean do not resign. Therefore, you might use the second round pick on outside back depth. Cecily Stout, Georgia might be a good option.
Fourth round Gotham could look to add that left footed winger. Take a flyer on a high ceiling player such as Rebecca Jarret from UVA and from Washington NJ. A player like Victoria Pickett who suffered a season ending in 2021 and draft stock may have taken a hit because of it. A dynamic outside attacker who fits the role.
To know more about this years coming draft class, visit our friends at https://soccerdossier.com/ @soccerdossier on twitter.
Who do you want to see Gotham Draft? Do you agree with the areas of need? Let us know. Comment below.