This isn't quite a Roster Reset post, but it does make use of the current list, so I encourage you to read the latest if you're not caught up already.
So we're scoring some goals against big-time opposition in pre-season. Letting in a couple as well, but hell, it's in Mexico, right? Anyway, glancing over the lineups, we can make a few assumptions and guesses, as well as raise a few questions, about the current state of the roster. I imagine we lined up something like this...
...though the second half probably saw DiRaimondo sit deep next to Wasson with Khumalo and Shipalane advanced on the wings. Likewise, I wouldn't have been shocked if Castillo-Quaranta-Barklage played in front of a dedicated destroyer (Morsink) in a 4-1-3-2 in the first half, but we'll need to see video evidence of how the team is playing before I make that call. So, what talking points do we draw from this?
(1) Assuming a healthy, motivated Szetela is a starter (or at least challenging for a starting spot) on this team, where does he fit in? Given that Simms/Morsink will probably go at d-mid, and all signs point to Tino in attacking midfield, I think he probably gets shuffled out to the right, though he'd be an option in the middle if Tino goes down.
(2) Barklage is high on the depth chart. Injuries are going to happen. With Barklage able to slot in pretty much anywhere in midfield, and Onalfo's starting of him here suggesting that he's one of the first off the bench, I think he's made the team. The question is, does he do so on the senior or developmental roster? Given that he started over Shipalane (who currently holds a senior roster spot), you'd expect he'd be making the jump up, perhaps at Shipalane's expense.
(3) McTavish seems to have the edge over Vaughn as cover for Namoff, given that he played with the first team. I can't really see us carrying three right backs on the senior roster, though that assumes Namoff returns and McTavish isn't the first option off the bench in central defense (which he is on the current roster of signed players...sigh).
(4) Woolard getting the call at left back could just be the staff getting a look at him in action so they can make the call on whether he continues in camp over Graye/Adams, or it could be a signal that none of the other fullback options are making a solid case. At 25, he's still eligible for Dev Dollars, but at this point in his career, he may (rightly) be looking for a better wage.
(5) Pena jumping right in with the first team indicates to me that this is a serious trial and not just a courtesy, and that he's been relatively sharp in training. Has the Mivdun finally arrived?
(6) I wonder why Hamid didn't get any time. I'm guessing Perkins playing the whole match was to get him better integrated with his defenders (he hasn't had the time with them in game action that Hamid has thus far in the pre-season).
So where does that leave the roster?
Burch will be on the inactive list to start the season, allowing the signing of Pena or Taylor (or Arzu if we can't agree to terms or are not impressed by the other two). The rest is really going to depend upon who is willing to take Dev Dollars. I would expect that Barklage would be bumped to the senior roster, displacing Vaughn or Shipalane. If we can grab Woolard on Dev Dollars at the back, I expect he'll edge out Adams and Graye.
With one of Wasson or DiRaimondo taking a Dev spot as midfield depth (assuming Wasson will settle for the Dev roster and Barklage makes the jump), that leaves one (if Woolard signs) or two spots available that Rice, Graye, and Adams are fighting over (assuming Najar is targeted for a mid-year GenAd signing, a la Hamid last summer). Hard to say who has the edge there.