Collin and Charlie: The Foundation
So many interviews over the past several weeks focused on Jack Blake, Miguel Berry, or Alejandro Guido. They are the offensive big guns that have scored very important goals in the past several weeks. These front line players are the usual stars of those highlight videos that the USL puts out week after week. There are two players that don’t make those highlights very often, yet their play is a huge reason why Loyal has been successful and that is Charlie Adams and Collin Martin.
Coach Nate Miller had nothing but glowing words for both of these midfielders. “Charlie and Collin are foundational to our team.” Speaking of Charlie Adams, “What Charlie does goes really unnoticed. He’s a great organizer and an amazing leader.” Speaking of Collin Martin, “He might the most talented player on our roster. That guy is an incredible footballer. I think he’s underrated and I think more people should know him as a footballer…he’s an incredibly talented player.”
Part of what makes Adams important is his leadership. He is helping the team with the highs and lows of this early season. “There were times earlier in the season where we were okay…but the results weren’t going our way…Sometimes the result isn’t always the byproduct of the game” Adams said of those early games. He continued to put it in perspective, saying “In soccer, you can demolish a team and still be losing one-nil.” He was quick to point out how the rocky start helped them lately, saying “The great thing is we’ve experienced early in the season of going a goal down and coming back from one-nil down in a home game. We have the experience to correct it and that’s what we did.”
He brought up the Las Vegas match, “We knew how to react. The emotions weren’t too high. We just kept playing our football.” He drew some comparisons to other great teams for inspiration. “If you watch the best teams in the world, I think that’s what they do.You look at the Manchester United team under Alex Ferguson, no matter what, they keep playing the way they wanted to play until the end. A lot of times they would come back with results and victories. I am happy to see that we reacted like that.”
Charlie Adams and his leadership cannot be understated. Even in practice, he is frequently the most vocal player on the pitch. He seems to be the teams hype man, both hyping up great plays, but also encouraging his teammates to recover from a mistake.
Asked what to look for from him and Collin in the middle of the park, he said, “Me and Collin are very different in ourselves and compliment each other very well…The process of building out from the goalkeeper all the way to the forwards isn’t just the end product of scoring a goal, it’s the first pass form the goal keeper, it’s the build out from the back four including the midfield. It’s supporting the play behind and sometimes supporting the play in front. We are very much team players in that we are trying to allow our attacking players to succeed. Making sure in the areas where they need to be creative that we are in those areas we are there backing them up to stop counter attacks, to tackle, to keep giving them the ball to cross, to score, to keep creating those chances.” He went on to say, “What you’ll see from us is that we are very good technically and we have a bite and aggression to win the ball back, and it’s great when the fans cheer us on for that.”
Nate Miller pointed out “(Collin’s) ability to break pressure, his ability to carry the ball forward, and the detail of his passing is phenomenal.” He closed up saying “what makes those two really good is each other. They have a really good partnership and great chemistry, and they have built that over time.
So when Oakland and Sacramento come to town, keep an eye on those two players in the middle of the field. Players like Charlie Adams and Collin Martin might not hit those screamers like Jack Blake, but it’s players like Adams and Martin who get the ball from our half to the opponents half. No Adams or Martin means no Blake bombs.