The Atlanta United universe has imploded this offseason. Beloved players have left the team unceremoniously and the fan base is beginning to feel uneasy about the potential success of the 2020 version of the club.
Perhaps the most prevelant question throughout the offseason has been focused around filling the space left by Darlington Nagbe. Nagbe left the team at the conclusion of the 2019 season to be with longtime coach Caleb Porter, who just, like, really gets him and isn’t like other coaches. Nagbe’s prodigious skill in refusing to relinquish the ball in midfield made him not only a fan favorite, but an instrumental piece in Atlanta United’s attack.
With him now in Ohio and money available for the club to burn, everyone has been asking: Who is the Nagbe replacement?
They’ve also been asking:
Is it Crutchie? The newsboy with a crutch? From Disney’s “Newsies”? You know the thing about the paper boys on strike? Christian Bale was in it?
Let’s examine the evidence by asking some questions of our own.
Will Crutchie be more likely to stick around for an extended period of time?
Yes. This bodes well for Crutchie’s chances at becoming the Nagbe replacement. Crutchie and his gang of ragtag rapscallions, the “Newsies”, took a stand against Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hurst. These two men were some of the most powerful men in the world and these children delightfully held their ground through song and dance. Crutchie knew it was a longshot to win against the barons, but stayed true to his friends. Crutchie possesses a truly loyal heart, and will never leave us.
Speaking of possessing things, how is Crutchy in possession?
It’s canon that he has never once lost a newspaper. Not. Once. And of course, being a necromancer, he also possesses several souls.
Is Crutchy ready to take on a bigger role?
Of course. He already has.
In the original movie version of “Newsies”, Crutchie is cited as a secondary character. In the 2011 Broadway Musical, Crutchie is given a chance to take more responsibility. He became a secondary main character, with multiple vocal solos.
Can Crutchy bring the same positive energy to the team?
Yep. But don’t take it from me. Take it from the back of his official Broadway Trading Card (2012 rookie edition).
“The ultimate optimist. You won’t find him looking for sympathy. A tough little guy, he’s always got a wisecrack and a smile.”
Sounds like maybe even an improvement to the normally reserved Nagbe.
Holy hell they actually called him “Crutchie”? This isn’t a bit?
Look the early 90’s were...different.
But they still call him Crutchie in the Broadway show?
Crutchie has a wonderful smile, sure to distract the other team and create key opportunities on the counter attack, and maybe even in possession.
Has he had proper coaching?
The 1992 movie was directed by legendary choreographer Kenny Ortega, who also directed High School Musical. Please. I think he’s ready.
Is he Darlington Nagbe?
His given name is Darlington Crutchie Nagbe.
So unfortunately, no. It’s a different person.
Is Crutchie from “Newsies” the Nagbe replacement?
The Newsboys strike took place in 1899 in New York City. It’s very likely Crutchie is dead or unwilling to move from New York. So no. Crutchie from Newsies is unfortunately not the Nagbe replacement.
He’s the Gressel replacement.