A couple of weeks ago I wrote a short post on Paul Arriola’s impressive start to the 2017 Liga MX Clausura season. In it, I mentioned that if he kept up his production that surely Bruce Arena would come calling sometime this year.
Well, he’s doing everything in his power to get that phone call (Do they even call anymore? It’s probably a text now-a-days, isn’t it?). In his fourth appearance of the season, he scored his second goal, finishing off a deadly counter-attack with a fine finish, low and hard past fellow USMNT hopeful William Yarbrough in the Club Leon goal.
The goal helped Xolos defeat Leon, 4-2, and keep the club atop the league standings through five matches played.
Looking at the stable of national team players as it stands, Arriola’s direct competition for a spot would seem to be Alejandro Bedoya. While January camp isn’t worth reading too much into, Bedoya wasn’t exactly at the forefront of Arena’s plans as far as lineup construction goals.
Judging solely on current form, Arriola is making a very strong case to edge out Bedoya on the proverbial depth chart very soon. If he keeps this up, the call-up for the March World Cup qualifiers could become a formality instead of a question mark.