When Atlanta United signed Eric Remedi in the summer of 2018, he was like the peanut butter to Tata Martino’s jelly sandwich (i’m trying to delete it) and played a pivotal role in Atlanta United’s march to its one-and-only MLS Cup title. But ever since, things have been rocky under two different managers. Remedi was inconsistent and lost his role as a regular starter to Jeff Larentowicz late in 2019 under Frank de Boer. In 2020, things only seemed to get worse, and the decent performances seemed like the outliers from the Argentine.
Position: Defensive midfielder
Games Played: 18 (12 starts)
What went right this season?
He registered an assist in Pity Martinez’s swan song when he raked a long diagonal to his fellow Argentine, who then skinned two players before beating the goalkeeper. It was a nice pass.
What does he need to improve on?
Honestly, a lot. Most of all, as the deepest-lying midfielder typically, Remedi made too many costly mistakes this season that lead to immediate chances for the opposition. The troublesome part about it is that mistakes seemed to be of every variety at different points: getting bullied off the ball, making an errant pass in the middle of the park, ball-watching and failing to pick up a runner... In my opinion, some of these errors can be cleaned up with more effective coaching that can clearly communicate a simpler task for Remedi. Tata Martino was brilliant about this, and we saw Remedi lock down Maxi Moralez, Kaku, and Diego Valeri during the team’s 2018 MLS Cup run. A simple, defensive task was always something Remedi could easily handle, but when too much responsibility and nuanced instruction was put on his plate, he seemed to struggle.
One other thing: fitness. Remedi is a guy who just has an atypical body type for a footballer (and we’ve always used the term thiccfielder with the utmost affection). But this year, with two major pandemic-induced interruptions in the season (the initial stoppage, and then the break due to Atlanta’s early exit from MLS is Back), he never looked as fit as he did in the two years prior.
What role will he play in 2021?
Sadly, there may not be a role for Remedi with Atlanta United in 2021 due to his performances. In public interviews, the front office was clear that many players were essentially playing for their futures considering the way things were going this year. Assuming Remedi is part of that contingent, it’s hard to make a case that he made himself an asset the team can rely on next season.