While MLS stars like Juan Pablo Ángel and David Beckham will get most of the preseason headlines, there are a couple of MLS players poised to have breakout years. Here are two potential stars that you will be hearing a lot about in 2008.
Ray Burse Jr:
Burse, 23, is improving fast, and he could be next in the long line of successful American goalkeepers. He should confirm his spot as the No. 1 keeper at FC Dallas this season, raising serious questions over Dario Sala’s future in Texas.
Athletic and fearless, Burse reads the game well. Bruse has the potential to follow the paths blazed by the likes of Friedel, Keller and Howard to Europe in a couple of years.
Findley’s problem, if you can call it that, is that he plays in Salt Lake. This small market team does not get the publicity that teams in the big media markets get.
But that does not take anything away from Findley’s skill and potential. Traded from the Los Angeles Galaxy along with Nathan Sturgis for Chris Klein last year, Findley took advantage of the extra playing time by scoring six goals. More than anything, his blistering pace makes him an offensive threat.
Real Salt Lake will be improved in 2008 and this should help Findley get the attention of U.S. coach Bill Bradley. Expect a call-up to the national time this summer for Findley as the U.S. begins its World Cup campaign.