24 Under 24: #3 DeAndre Yedlin, Seattle Sounders

3. DeAndre Yedlin

Pos: D | Seattle Sounders | Age: 20

The Sounders’ first Homegrown player and 20-year-old rookie right back makes his debut high on this list after wowing observers in the starting lineup of the Supporters’ Shield frontrunner. With a goal and two assists, Yedlin's yet to fully take advantage of his athletic ability and pace in attack, but he's a force regardless. He became just the second Homegrown player to be named to the All-Star gameday roster and the first rookie to earn that honor since Michael Parkhurst in 2005. “The thing with DeAndre is his skill and his energy,” Sounders head coach Sigi Schmid said. “His youth, and as a result his endurance, allows him to be able to attack on that right side of the field. It gives us a little more attacking flare on that side.”

What TDs and coaches like: "He changed the way their team is set up in that they'll take whoever is playing right midfielder in a 4-4-2 and tuck him in, and allow Yedlin to roam the whole flank. He's done that quite well. ... We talked a lot about him since he came from Akron. The thing that stands out, absolutely without question, is his pace. It's his pace getting forward and it's also his pace getting back, because he does recover pretty well.  ... He is contributing to the attack, he's scored a couple of goals. ... He's better in the air than I thought he was. ... You take a young player straight out of college, a rookie who's 20 years old, and he allows you to change a little bit the way your team plays. That shows you the respect that Sigi and his staff have for Yedlin to organize their team with him as a strength and not a liability.

Where TDs and coaches want improvement: "He does need to get better with his final delivery, final service, because he does get into good positions. His crossing is just OK. ... He's a decent one-v-one defender, I still think he needs to get better at that. ... He's played almost 2,000 minutes and he only has one assist [editor's note: Yedlin now has two assists]. And as much as he's gotten forward and the spots that he's gotten into, he's got to do a better job with that. ... Yedlin has benefitted from the hype of playing in Seattle."

Opta Says: Oriol Rosell (4.4) is the only player eligible for 24 Under 24 with a higher interception per 90 rate than DeAndre Yedlin during 2013 (4.2).
 

Tale of the Tape
Last Year in 24U24: N/A
Castrol Index (as of 9/20/13): #112

2013 Stats
Matches played: 24
Matches started: 23
Goals: 1
Assists: 2

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