Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Mennah to FC Cincy

Kekuta Manneh will be joining FC Cincinnati for the 2019 season. He will be a key piece that fills one of the holes for an expansion side trying desperately to find its footing.

After the recent injury to Jimmy McLaughlin, FCC was certainly looking for a midfielder. Menneh fits that bill. There are questions around him, however. After jumping on the scene with Vancouver as a teen (6 goals and 4 assists in just 767 minutes), he drifted a little bit into the land of anonymous MLS land. Not because he isn't talented, but more because he was playing for a team that gets zero recognition.

Vancouver plays out west, on turf, and hasn't been able to find its place in MLS. I tend to think their strong connection to their NASL past makes MLS a little hesitant to feature them in anything. Combine that with the fact that they are a Canadian team and you get a team where good players might go unnoticed (save for Alphonso Davies going to Bayern, come to think of it, Manneh's talent in his early days might have put Vancouver on the radar and brought Bayern out to look at Davies).

Mennah, at one point in 2013, was seen as the next big thing in MLS. 2014 and 2015 gave him more minutes to work with but the team sucked and his production dropped to somewhere around "good MLS starter range."

Year: Mins (G+A p90)
2013: 764 (0.94)
2014: 1198 (0.45)
2015: 2424 (0.48)
2016: 1139 (0.55)

With his production consistent, it is easy to see why Gregg Berhalter and the Columbus Crew picked him up in 2017. He went on to put away 4 goals and assist on another three in just 838 minutes (0.75 G+A p90).

I think Manneh wanted to dip his toes into international waters for a while and Berhalter made that happen. He ended up down with CF Pachuca in Mexico, but he didn't break into the 18. From there he went to FC St. Gallen 1879 of the Swiss 1st Division, where he played as a sub.

The lesson we have learned here is that LigaMX and the Swiss Super League are competitive levels that are slightly ahead of MLS. Manneh was not able to do much in his time there. However! Back in MLS, he should be able to knock back a handful of goals and assists for FC Cincy.

As of this moment, we are not sure how much Columbus got from FCC for owning his "rights," but I imagine it wasn't a whole lot.

Ultimately, Manneh brings experience and an attacking presence to FC Cincy, but it doesn't get them anywhere close to playoff level.

Here's an updated look at the teams I've evaluated:

Player Ratings (avg)TransferMarkt Value (000)
1NYC70.564.6$ 16,303$ 4,470
2ATL70.466.7$ 49,014$ 14,484
3DCU69.756.6$ 21,934$ 2,990
4NYR69.764.9$ 20,192$ 3,745
5TFC69.765.4$ 18,061$ 3,502
6MIN69.657.1$ 13,800$ 4,470
7MTL69.665.2$ 13,410$ 4,876
9CLB69.366.2$ 24,671$ 4,180
9NER69.165.6$ 13,955$ 5,811
10FCC68.764.3$ 12,326$ 4,790
11PHI68.256.5$ 9,933$ 5,529
12CHI67.863.7$ 17,022$ 3,955
13ORL67.262.2$ 10,365$ 3,309 


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