Miles Robinson just completed a career breakout year during his first season as a full fledged starter for Atlanta United.
Position: Center back
Games Played: 34 appearances, 33 starts
What went right this season?
Robinson nearly had the perfect season and was only stunted by an unfortunate injury sustained right before the playoffs. The American defender has been with Atlanta United since the Five Stripes drafted him in the 2017 MLS SuperDraft, but he was never an important part of the first team before 2019. Robinson was presented with the perfect opportunity to impress a new manager and to ultimately secure a spot in the starting XI. Robinson’s impact on the team has been immense; His pace, tactical awareness, and ability to clean up after others allowed the rest of the team to push forward and play with more attacking freedom.
What does he need to improve on?
Maybe don’t go to any more USMNT camps? (Just kidding please don’t come after me.) Obviously, there is always room for improvement, but Robinson was Atlanta’s best defender of the season by a large margin. He finished third in the MLS Defender of the Year votes, showing how highly those around the league rate him. If Leandro Gonzalez-Pirez leaves Atlanta United, which could be a possibility depending on his contract situation, Atlanta would be losing a ball playing center back that can hit long diagonal balls across the field pretty effectively. If Robinson could pick up some pointers from LGP on how to play out of the back and hit those killer long balls that allow Atlanta to quickly move the play, he would add even more value to his game.
What role will he play in 2020?
Robinson will certainly be an integral part of de Boer’s plans for 2020. Because of the unfortunate circumstances that led to Robinson missing the entirety of Atlanta’s post-season run, he unfortunately didn’t get to complete his breakout season in the way so many of us thought he would. However, if he continues to play the way he did during the 2019 season, he will be a stalwart in de Boer’s lineup and could maybe even attract attention from European clubs. He’s only 22 years old and he still has his entire career in front of him, an exciting prospect considering how immense he was in 2019 for Atlanta United.
Overall Player Grade: A+