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Atlanta United Report Cards: Justin Meram

The Iraqi winger was surprisingly productive this season, is he coming back? Should he?

Minnesota United FC v Atlanta United FC: Final - 2019 U.S. Open Cup Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

Justin Meram

Position: Winger/LWB

Games Played: 27 appearances, 18 starts (All competitions)

Goals: 4

Assists: 3

What went right this season?

I was surprised by this trade; I really didn’t know what to expect from an MLS veteran who was traded for the third time in less than 2 seasons. But because of injuries and formation changes he ended playing a bigger role than we expected. Even though he’s not a natural defender he did well enough playing left wing back when Atlanta needed him. His best game undoubtedly was the 2-1 against Montreal in Atlanta, where he scored two goals to give the Five Stripes an important 3 points. Finally playing for a good team with great fans, he seemed rejuvenated. He was instrumental in helping Atlanta United win the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup for the first time.

Orlando City fans despise him and he doesn't like them either, so, we have no choice but to STAN.

What does he need to improve on?

I don’t know how much a soon to be 31-year-old can be expected to improve, but if he’s back we just need him to be like he was this season, a versatile player who’s always ready to come on to make an impact. If I had a complaint it would be that sometimes he tried to do too much, shooting when he shouldn't have and losing the ball in key areas but unlike Pity Martinez he’s not a DP so I’m going to give him a pass.

What role will he play in 2020?

It’s hard to say, since we don’t know much about his contract situation. Assuming he’s back, I think he can be a useful player who can play multiple positions, he seems like a great team player who doesn’t mind coming off the bench. He could be a great depth player and leader in the locker room.

Overall Player Grade: B-