Watch the MLS SuperDraft presented by adidas on Thursday at 12:30 pm ET. The first round will be streamed on ESPN's social and digital platforms (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and the ESPN app) or follow using MLSsoccer.com’s real-time Draft Tracker.
With Daryl Dike on board, things are shuffled up a bit in the final version of the MLSsoccer.com Mock Draft. It seems like either Dike or Robbie Robinson will go first overall, as Miami’s roster build continues with the likely addition of the first and third overall picks (barring a trade).
Dike’s addition, as long as some deep introspection, leads us into another edition of a mock draft, ahead of the main event beginning on Thursday.
Here’s a guess at how the 2020 edition of the draft could play out (as of January 8, 2020).
CB/LB - Stanford - Pre-signed senior
Not in desperate need for an instant contributor Revolution could grab Beason with an eye on using him as a center back. He’d be a seasoned leader that would get minutes right away in USL League One, and his versatility wouldn’t hurt either even if New England has cover at left back.
W - Southern Methodist
Another team with a well-set roster at this stage, McLaughlin’s attacking threat out wide is one place that the Crew use another player or two. McLaughlin would have the chance to work his way into the lineup, as he has the skills to come good at the next level.
CM - North Carolina
Deployed in college as an outside back at times but capable of playing central midfield, Kelly is a talented player that could end up as Tab Ramos’ first draft pick.
RB/CM - Wake Forest
If he’s on the board at nine, Johnston makes sense for the Impact, with an eye to trying him both in central midfield or at right back and see where he helps most.
CM - Penn State
Can the Rapids spare an international spot for a backup central midfielder? It’s worth a shot with Molloy, and it worked out great in 2019 with Andre Shinyashiki. Molloy looks to be the best of the seniors from overseas, so it’ll be interesting to see when he comes off the board.
CF - Central Florida
Jennings surged up the goalscoring charts in college soccer the past two years. If he can take that and make it work in MLS, he’d be a steal at this point in the draft. Having the chance to learn from the leading scorer MLS wouldn’t be a bad landing spot.
CF - San Diego
Dike’s addition to the draft pool could lead a few of the other forwards to slip down the board. And while he’s no sure thing, he has a big frame and is crafty with the ball. He’d be a decent third-string option that can get minutes in USL for New England.
CM - Duke
Given the team’s back log of Homegrown talent, both signed and unsigned, FC Dallas will be hoping someone is eager to trade back into this point in the draft. Expect a similar to 2019 if they hold, looking for the best talent available at this point. Williamson isn’t a bad case for that, even if central midfield is well stocked in Frisco.
GK - Charlotte
A late run on goalkeepers in the first round seems plausible, and Panicco is one of the top shot-stoppers available in the class.
RW - North Carolina
Late first round picks have a hard time sticking in Portland historically. Taking a long look at Skahan here wouldn’t be a bad move, as he could be tried on the wing or as an outside back.
LB - Pacific
With the best-player approach taken higher in the draft, FC Dallas can take a look at Jimenez, an attacking player that projects as a left back in MLS. He could be stashed with North Texas and offers upside after he missed almost the entire 2019 season.
W - Louisville
A dynamic wing player at Louisville, Dieye gets the nod here as Minnesota looks to shuffle things up in the final third.
GK - High Point
One of a handful of teams that could opt to grab a goalkeeper, Meyer’s right there with Panicco when it comes to the best candidates in goal.
W - Connecticut
RSL draft picks are much more likely to start out with the USL Championship title-winning Monarchs. Harris adds craft and guile from wide areas, and the Canadian youth international could sneak his way onto the MLS roster.
CF - Loyola Maryland
At this point yet to sign a Homegrown deal with the Red Bulls, the Union can bring Saramago into camp and take a look at him as a backup striker.
CF - Michigan
True No. 9s are one spot lacking in depth on the NYCFC roster. And Popovic, the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year in 2019, has shown the ability to combine with teammates and set up goals as well as score them.
LB - Marquette
George Bello is the only incumbent left back rostered, which is sure to change. There might be better left backs on the board than Seagrist at this point, but most are internationals. Given him a look in camp would boost their depth if he hits.
GK - UC Davis
Another team with just two goalkeepers on the roster, LAFC could add Lapsley, the Big West Goalkeeper of the Year in 2019. Listed at 6-foot-5, he would be a serviceable option as the No. 3 on the depth chart.
RB - California
Lekressner showed a goal-scoring punch for the Bears in 2019, earning Pac-12 First-Team honors as a senior. A converted forward, Toronto FC could add the right back with an eye on trying him out as a depth player somewhere out wide.
CM - Akron
Another player flying under the radar after battling injuries in 2019, Harter’s a smart central midfielder that can play anywhere in the middle.