It's time to cut bait
May 9, 2017
Gonzalo Veron entered the game in the second half versus Chicago. A little later, he found himself with the ball on the right sideline. A Chicago defender was right in front of him. Veron, in his infinite wisdom, decided to run through the opponent. One problem: another defender was standing right behind his teammate. Oh, and Veron didn't even it make through the first one.
Four days later, Veron got his chance to start against Kansas City. In the middle of the game, a wonderful opportunity presented itself: Metro had the numbers pushing forward. Veron had the ball all alone in the middle of the field. He had options to his left, options to his right. He paused. He thought. The defense closed down and he lost the ball.
These two recent incidents are Gonzalo Veron in a nutshell: a player who makes awful decisions, a player who cannot compete at the speed of MLS.
This is not to say that Veron is a terrible player. He clearly was valuable in Argentina for a pretty excellent San Lorenzo team. It's just that we have often seen that quality in another league doesn't always translate to MLS (the names of Sergio Galvan Rey and Jorge Rojas come to mind). This is especially true for players whose thought lags a second behind. Veron is clearly such a player.
"Stop!", some would yell. What about his performance in the Champions League? In that game against LA? Even in the playoffs? Well, here is the thing: games that are considered Veron's best performances come either with Bradley Wright-Phillips off the field, or with he and Sacha Kljestan purposely marked out of the game, with extra effort extended to stop them, which gives Veron time and space to roam. And... even with his supposed good performance in the Champions League or in the playoffs, he still failed to score.
Jesse Marsch has tried Veron on the wing. He tried him in the middle. He tried him at forward next to BWP. None of that has worked. Perhaps the only thing that would work as the lone forward, as in that LA game... but that will not happen if BWP has two working legs.
And then there is the cost. As a Designated Player, Veron's status precludes Metro from signing a difference maker. The spring transfer period has closed, but the summer one is around the corner, and if Metro wants to improve itself, how can it when a non-entity is taking up a DP slot?
Of course, getting rid of Veron will not be easy. Metro would either have to buy him out, in which case his salary will still count against the cap, or find a willing buyer somewhere. We'd venture the guess that buyer would not come from MLS, but, theoretically, there should be a Central or South American team that could use him? Even if Metro has to take pennies on the dollar to unload him...
We've seen enough, Gonzalo. Time to cut bait...