Who would have thought that after just two starts up top for RSL at forward to fill in for players who are either injured or on national team call ups that the guy who has been practicing for years as a second defensive midfielder for RSL would win player of the week for his work up top?
Here is the official info from MLS HQ:
NEW YORK (Monday, June 6, 2011) - Real Salt Lake attacker Jean Alexandre was voted MLS Player of the Week by the North American Soccer Reporters (NASR) after he notched a goal and an assist in RSL's 2-0 victory over Vancouver Whitecaps FC. The goal was the first in the Haitian international's MLS career.
With RSL's forward corps depleted by injury and Gold Cup call-ups, Alexandre moved from his usual midfield role to forward and justified the coach's decision. In the 32nd minute, Kyle Beckerman sent a pass through the Vancouver defense to Alexandre at the top of the box. As he received the ball, Alexandre held off one defender, then used a nifty step-over to brush by a second defender before slipping the ball past the charging goalkeeper for his first MLS goal in 26 career appearances.
Late in the second half, Alexandre's quick feet helped set up the insurance goal. After a giveaway by Vancouver in the midfield, Alexandre evaded a sliding challenge and poked a through pass to Fabian Espindola. In alone against goalkeeper Joe Cannon, Espindola coolly finished to the far post.
Alexandre is the second player from RSL to win Player of the Week in 2011 (Javier Morales won in week 2) and it marks the first time this season that a team has had a second player receive the honor.
Now Jean will be the first person to tell you that he has a lot of work to do to adjust to the position, but if this is how he has adjusted after a couple weeks I think the risky decision to give him the shot could prove to be a very shrewd move by Jason Kreis and the RSL staff. Combine in the fact that Fabi was able to get his scoring touch back, and we could see those pesky questions about RSL's ability to score goals go away in a hurry.
It will be an interesting test on Wednesday at Columbus.
OFF MY SOAPBOX