In the player preview series, we are going to take a look at the current players on the Houston Dynamo roster, how they performed last season, and what we might expect from them in 2022. Here is the next in our series and stay tuned for more to come in the weeks leading up to the start of the season.
Position - Left back
2021 MLS stats – 25 appearances, 22 starts, 1 assist
This piece will probably have a lot less numbers than other previous Players Previews because numbers aren’t my strong suit, but I have a decent memory. Join me for this one.
After the retirement of DaMarcus Beasley in 2019, Adam Lundqvist was the undisputed starter at the left back position for the 2020 season. As we all know by now, the 2020 and 2021 season should stay in the past forever after the Dynamo came in last in the Western Conference in both seasons. But, let’s look at Adam in 2021 briefly.
2021 came with ups and downs for Adam. He was the starter but Sam Junqua was breathing down his neck around mid season with a few frustrating results and some personal mistakes on the field by Lundy. Because of that, Junqua got the opportunity to beat him out for that starting role . This seemed to light a fire under Adam, because after just two games of not starting he made it back to the starting XI and I noticed a change for the better when it came to his game. Adam looked sharper, stronger and I would even say more “violent” (in a good way) when it came to defending side of the ball. Personally, I saw him frustrated in multiples , games when the Dynamo were on that terrible stretch with no wins. As a fan watching, it had to bring some comfort to see that some of the players were aware of the sentiment of the fans in the stands and they felt the pain that they all were feeling.
With only 1 assist to his name in 2021 and not many chances created by him in the form of key passes or even crosses (which if we want to get into it, the Dynamo did not have a proper 9 to receive those crosses in the box) what should be expected from the Swedish Cafu? (Adam if you are reading this, NO PRESSURE but at the same time all the pressure.)
In modern football, fullbacks do as much attacking as they do defending. With the signing of Zeca expected to bring more competition to both the left and right back positions (and from what we have seen of him he seems to be like the typical Brazilian outside back that loves to go on the attack), Adam will have to step up his game on the offensive side of the ball.
As you see below Adam’s numbers were good when it came to being on his toes defensively (e.g. Pressures, Tackles, Interceptions). Now the question is could we expect more out of him offensively? Should we?
Now that the Dynamo have a proper 9 in Sebastian Ferreira, I expect Adam to get into the attack more often and look to cross the ball. I don’t know if we should put a number of crosses per game, but Adam had an average of 2 crosses per game in 2021 (50 total) which seems super low to me. Maybe doubling that number per game would be a huge improvement, literally doubling potential scoring chances and with the new striker in the box, those chances will be more dangerous.
Side Note: If you look at 2019/2020, Lundqvist had about 20 more crosses (75 in 2019 & 71 in 2020) with a guy named Mauro Manotas, a proper 9, in the box waiting for the service, so that’s where the expectation comes from.
Something that should improve as a team as a whole is shots from outside the box. It’s basic math, that the more you shoot on target the more the chances of you scoring goes up. When it comes to Adam he only had 2 shots all season. Adam, I need more shots please, let it rip bro.
Adam has become somewhat of a fan favorite because of his tough style of play and his passion when it comes to working on the pitch. The expectation for this one is for him to keep his intensity and fire inside of him to get this club back to the top of the table. A leader on the pitch is needed to get this team back to the top of Major League Soccer.
All in all, if we want the Dynamo to be in the playoffs in 2022, they are going to have to score more than the opponents and I think Adam Lundqvist can be a great asset now more than ever in his career for this Houston Dynamo FC. What do you think, can Adam be an asset to the Dynamo offensively? Let us know in the comments.