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Season Review: Eduardo Coudet

Editor’s note: PSP is running season reviews for each Philadelphia Union player — one per weekday for the next few weeks. You can read all the reviews here.

Thirty-five year old Eduardo Coudet was signed from Argentinian club Colon de Santa Fe in July to bring some experience to the Union’s central midfield. He impressed initially, having strong performances in friendlies against Celtic and Manchester United, as well as in his first league matches against Salt Lake and Columbus. But an injury during the Chivas de Guadalajara friendly kept Coudet from the line up for large stretches of the 2nd half of the season.

Having played professionally for close to 10 clubs, including an impressive stretch with Argentinean power house River Plate, Coudet was supposed to be a calming presence in the center of the park. And he was that initially for the Union. His poise and controlled passing fit well into the Union’s possession based style from the start and he quickly became a starter. But after a few games, his age and his deficiencies started to catch up with him. His tackles seemed toothless at times (no cards and only 6 fouls for a defensive central midfielder?). And his offensive contributions were minimal with the searching ball over the top becoming his preferred pass from midfield and seemingly no shooting threat in his arsenal. He never really reclaimed a place in the line-up after his injury, which leaves his status for 2011 up in the air.
2010 statistics
9 games (9 starts). 631 minutes played. 0 goals, 0 assists, 1 shot (0 on goal). 6 fouls caused, 5 fouls suffered. No cards.
High point
His first two games, against Columbus and Real Salt Lake. The Argentinean showed poise on the ball and the ability to find passes forward from deep in the midfield, something the Union had been lacking to that point. Also chipped in an assist in the Celtic friendly.
Low point
The friendly against Chivas Guadalajara.  Coudet routinely looked like a traffic cone in the center of the park as the speedy Mexican side flew around him. Also in the game, he injured his foot and missed a considerable amount of the second half of the season with the injury, never really reclaiming his starting role.
Poise. Coudet always looked the most comfortable of any of the Union’s midfielders dropping deep in the midfield and picking up the ball from the defenders. He usually found a decent pass coming from the back as well. And as with Stefani Miglioranzi, Coudet brought experience to the center of the park and hopefully passed on some knowledge to the younger midfielders.
Tackling. The guy probably tried more sliding tackles than the rest of the team combined and didn’t connect on many of them. Coudet also lacked a presence in the final third for the Union. While his mid range passing from deep in his own end is unmatched by most of the team, Coudet ended the season without a shot on goal or an assist.
It will depend on whether or not he has to be protected under the international player rule. If he doesn’t have to be protected, look for him not to be. The Union have a wealth of younger central midis that should see time before Coudet gets on the pitch next season. But if he does remain with the club, look for him to be a mentor to Andrew Jacobson, Amobi Okugo, Roger Torres, (and Toni Stahl?). And you could certainly do worse than having a guy like Coudet on the bench for a little depth in the midfield.

One Comment

  1. You could tell he had been training with the team for a some time prior to the Celtic friendly, as his through-ball to Le Toux was very impressive, and they seemed to be on the same page. It’s too bad Coudet’s performance faded over the last half of the season. There’s a part of me that wouldn’t be surprised if the Union FO just releases him prior to the 22nd … which (if I interpret the protected int’l player rule correctly) would mean only one international player must be automatically be protected. I’m looking at you, Torres. 😉

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