On Location: Unquestioned leadership

Jeff Agoos will anchor the Metros back line this season.

Photo Credit: 
Rafael Suanes/MLS/Wireimage.com

His résumé speaks for itself: five MLS titles, six MLS Cup appearances, three MLS Best XI nominations, member of the U.S. national team since 1985 and 134 career caps.

But perhaps the greatest attribute of MetroStars' defender Jeff Agoos cannot be quantified: leadership. Because of his vast experience, Agoos is expected to provide guidance to the entire MetroStars' roster. But that does not bother Agoos, as taking a leadership role comes natural to him.

"I think it is something I welcome," said Agoos, who won three MLS Cups with DC United and two with the San Jose Earthquakes. "I think it comes out of my character more than anything else. It is not really something that is being asked of me that I haven't done before, it is just part of who I am as a player."

When he is on the field, Agoos is always talking- whether it to the goalkeeper, his fellow defenders, the midfielders, or even the forwards. He believes that communication is one of the key components of building a championship club.

"It is important to be organized and have good starting points and know what your role is going to be," said Agoos. "It is not just my responsibility but it is everybody's responsibility. I may, at some points, do more of it than others but I think organization and communication are priorities in winning championships."

He has only been training with the MetroStars for a few weeks and already he has made an impact on veteran Metros and younger Metros alike.

"You can tell right away he is going to be a leader and it is only the first week of preseason," said forward John Wolyniec, who has played in 81 career games. "He is an experienced guy who has over a hundred caps and has won multiple championships. You can't do anything but respect a guy like that."

"For someone who plays in front of him, he makes things very easy," said midfielder Michael Bradley, who was taken in the fourth round of the 2004 MLS SuperDraft after playing on the U.S. U-17 National Team. "He is constantly organizing and makes everyone aware of what is going on. He is always pushing his team and that is rubbing off on everyone."

Agoos is a proven winner. With his multiple MLS Cup titles and experience on the national level, he is one of the most accomplished players in U.S. Soccer history. The MetroStars hope that the success he has enjoyed will carry over to their club in 2005.

"I think winning is a habit," said Agoos. "It doesn't come easy and you have to work for it. It is not something you get in a week or a month, it develops over time. We started a couple of weeks ago and hopefully that process is starting here."


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