Back on June 13th, we released our Imposter! Frankie Hejduk article in the leadup to our first qualifier in Guatemala City. And on August 14th, we re-released the same article (with a new forward) in reaction to his inclusion in the Havana roster. Although I never really understood what people saw in Frankie, his presence became even more perplexing after he crossed the threshhold between young surfer dude and embarrassing sufer dad. At last, after years of eye rolling, some of America’s soccer writers are starting to catch on.
In their post game analyses of the US-T&T match, Ives Galarcep (Soccer By Ives), Bruce McGuire (DuNord), and Jeff Carlisle (Soccernet) all criticized Hejduk’s performance. Of course, they had to preface their statements with praise for his “positive attitude,” “hustle,” and “dogged pursuit of the opposition.” But after that, they didn’t hold back. In particular, they attacked his inability to cross, going as far as to call it “shocking.” Frankie only scored 3/10 in both Carlisle and Galarcep’s ratings, making him the lowest on the team. And who was their suggested replacement? None other than Marvell Wynne–the very same player we pegged in our original article over four months ago. It seems, perhaps, that the days of the Frankie Hejduk apologist are numbered and we couldn’t be happier. Let’s hope that Bob Bradley catches on and lets go of this aging right back. For full quotations, see below:
- IVES GALARCEP: “Frankie Hejduk (3). You love his hustle but hate his lack of skill. It was his poor pass that led to the breakout and eventual Russell Latapy goal. He mis-hit crosses and turned the ball over repeatedly. The performance makes you pray for Marvell Wynne to start getting minutes.”
- BRUCE MCGUIRE: “I have always respected Frankie Hejduk for his tireless effort, positive attitude and dogged pursuit of the opposition. But last night the USA needed a right back who could simply cross the ball. And Frankie has never ever been able to do that properly. He had at least 6 great chances to make big plays happen and the team got nothing at all from it. That is unacceptable. I have a strong belief that Marvell Wynne could have gotten the job done.”
- JEFF CARLISLE: “D, Frankie Hejduk, 3 — Defended competently enough early on, but was shocking with his distribution. It was his giveaway that sparked T&T’s first goal.”