Armchair Analyst: One big question for the Philadelphia Union

A Big Question: Can Haris Medunjanin fit into a high-pressing 4-4-2 set-up?

It seems very, very very very likely that the Union are going to shift away from the slow build, kill 'em with possession 4-2-3-1 that they really did put to good use last year – easily the best year in club history, all things considered. New sporting director Ernst Tanner has been open about wanting to see a change in the team's approach, and a cursory look at his background makes it clear: 4-4-2, high press.

I'm not in love with this idea. First, because Philly were just a little bit of experience in central defense (which they earned last season) and one goalscoring winger away from being really good. And second, because the guy who was arguably their most crucial piece doesn't really fit into that system.

Medunjanin is a regista. I think he's the league's best at that spot, and was central to everything good Philly produced:

What he's not is a ground-covering central midfield terror, which is what the high press pretty much demands out of the No. 6 role. If they really are going to go fast-and-furious, I don't see a spot in the XI for him.

Maybe it'll be worth it when all's said and done. Homegrown CM Derrick Jones seems a pretty natural fit, and there are other young players on the verge of pushing through. Maybe this is a case of moving away from what worked pretty well for something destined to work really well.

Maybe. But then again, maybe not.

Series: 
Topics: 

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Join MLS to #KickChildhoodCancer by tuning into eMLS 24 Hours of FIFA 20 on September 24 at 6:00 PM ET and donate to Children’s Oncology Group Foundation. Our Goal is a Cure ... Make it your goal too!