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Let’s check-in on Andrew Carleton

The 20 year-old is stepping up this year

United States of America U20 v France U20 - International Friendly Photo by Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

It’s been a bit of a rough road for US U-17 World Cup standout Andrew Carleton. Since 2017, he’s perhaps not stepped up his game as MLS analysts thought he would. In fact, he’s taken a step back. Carleton missed out on the U-20 World Cup last year, hasn’t seen much first team time with Atlanta United, and even missed a flight to Toronto because he forgot his passport. Not good.

Perhaps thinking that a change in scenery would be useful, Atlanta United loaned the winger to Indy Eleven in USL. Maybe its that Indiana is conducive to clearing one’s head, or there are fewer distractions due to COVID, but Carleton is consistently showing why he was hyped as a youngster.

This particular move from Carleton is pretty promising.

He also got the full nearly three minute video cut of highlights for his game against Louisville.

And the same against St. Louis when perhaps working on his finishing would have made the difference in the match for Indy.

Here he connects with Marvin Harrison for a routine looking score.

So far on the year, Carleton has 14 shots with five on target, six key passes, and two assists in 7 games. He’s establishing solid chemistry with one of the best strikers in USL, Tyler Pasher, and has stepped up his game. That compares to last year with Atlanta United 2 when Carleton managed 18 key passes, two assists, 33 shots, 17 on target, and five goals in 15 games.

Carleton has always had loads of talent but with this loan to Indy XI, rather than occasionally making an 18 for Atlanta United, Carleton is starting week in and week out. He has a defined role on the team and perhaps that will turn this into a year that he takes a step forward in his career.