If Miles Robinson is famous for one thing, it’s — well it’s for being an amazing MLS center back as exemplified by his MLS Best XI nomination in 2019 and subsequent promotion to the United States Men’s National Team in recent years culminating with impressive performances on important international stages as a starter.
But if there’s another thing he’s famous for, it’s for not talking shit. He’s as humble and steady and selfless as they come — quite the rarity for someone so athletically gifted and dominant between the lines. I wrote about about this quality a couple of years ago, which I hope can shed light on how he grew to have the unique demeanor he displays.
But the anecdotes about his selflessness and, well, general excellence just go on and on:
Miles on what he brought to the bubble: "ps4, a laptop for online classes, some books, a good attitude." #ATLUTD— Joe Patrick (@japatrick200) July 9, 2020
It shouldn’t be surprising that Miles Robinson would mention bringing “a good attitude” to Orlandowitg #ATLUTD. When I did a feature profile on him last year, here’s what his high school basketball coach told me. https://t.co/75hBX9pNqm pic.twitter.com/u8sKwXZa4e— Joe Patrick (@japatrick200) July 9, 2020
We’ll come back to this. But let’s also recap his performances as of late. With Atlanta United, everyone reading this needs no explanation as to how good he’s been since Frank de Boer handed him the reigns as an every-game starter. He battled injuries in 2020 which caused some inconsistencies in both his minutes and his performances, but he’s snapped right back in 2021 with another stellar season.
So stellar, in fact, that USMNT manager Gregg Berhalter was left with no choice but to rely on him the same way all of his other coaches have during a hugely important summer of competition. And for a player who only got his first taste of the international stage in exactly two years ago to the day (September 7, 2019) and only appeared in a United States shirt three times before this summer’s Gold Cup, that’s an impressive level of faith.
Despite having hardly appeared on the international stage, Robinson repaid that faith in full, playing the role of the calm-headed savvy veteran on the back line with the performances to match. When he scored the winner in the 117th minute against Mexico that allowed the United States to lift the Gold Cup trophy, the chorus of Robinson Believers grew louder.
Miles Robinson was very good at the Gold Cup pic.twitter.com/5fFoEM6gzD— chris russell (@watke_) August 4, 2021
So much so that when World Cup Qualifying matches came around, there was really no question who would be the starter at center back alongside John Brooks.
Gregg Berhalter on Miles Robinson. "He exceeded expectations at the Gold Cup and we're going to be looking for him to do that in qualifying." #USMNT #ATLUTD— Brian Sciaretta (@BrianSciaretta) August 26, 2021
One game later:
Gregg Berhalter thought Miles Robinson was 'outstanding' defensively today. Was happy with his performance.— USMNT Only (@usmntonly) September 3, 2021
Then, after the team’s next game in which Miles Robinson kept Bayern Munich’s Alphonso Davies in his pocket:
USMNT most consistent and best performer through two games: Miles Robinson. What a year he’s having- nailed in starter at RCB— Stu Holden (@stuholden) September 6, 2021
And this tweet from Holden nicely wraps up the exposition here. Today, Miles Robinson is a USMNT starter. If the team were playing in a World Cup match (which they kinda are), Robinson would be in the starting lineup. He’s not just in the same class with his international teammates like Brooks, Tyler Adams, Weston McKennie, Christian Pulisic, et al, he’s arguably as good in his position as any of them except Pulisic.
Any team in Europe that needs a CB would be foolish not to take a good look at Miles Robinson. Nothing gets past that guy— Sanjiv (@USMNTvideos) September 6, 2021
This is it. Miles Robinson isn’t just deserving of a move to a quality side in Europe, I’m astounded that teams aren’t flooding Carlos Bocanegra’s inbox with offers. They should. Not only would a team be getting an athletic talent that is unmatched among his US teammates, they’d be getting a person of impeccable character that is a dream for any coach. And that’s not to mention the additional marketing value of having a locked-on USMNT starter at one’s club.
When I talk to people about his potential value on the transfer market, I’m astounded at how low the figures are when you take everything Miles Robinson is into consideration. I, like you, probably hear something in a range between $6 million to $10 million as a potential fee. Granted, the market is very screwed up right now and I’m no expert in the calculus behind these deals. I’ll just say that any team able to scoop up such a quality player for such a low cost is getting an absolute steal.
What’s the point of this rant? If Robinson won’t hype himself up, someone’s gotta do it.