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2016 Player review: Fabinho

When he was on, he was on. When he wasn’t...

Philadelphia Union vs Sporting Kansas City Photo Gallery Trey Madara / Brotherly Game

2016 Summary: All in all, Fabinho had a decent year for the Philadelphia Union. He appeared in 29 of 34 games for the Union at left back, usually next to Richie Marquez. At times, the Brazilian left back augmented the Union’s offensive attack and was a key part of the Union’s defense. At other times, his willingness to jump into the attack meant the Union’s defense had to account for his absence.

What did he do right?: Fabinho’s marauding up the left wing and overlapping runs with Chris Pontius allowed both he and Pontius to get more into the attack. While Fabinho scored no goals, he had six assists - two of which went to CJ Sapong in different games against the New England Revolution. He was also a statistical monster, with his 7.04 rating from ranking behind only Pontius’ 7.05 on the club.

Philadelphia Union vs Real Salt Lake Photo Gallery
Fabinho was second on the Philadelphia Union with six assists.
Trey Madara / Brotherly Game

What did he do wrong?: Going forward to jump into the attack is always a risk. Sometimes it pays off, but when it doesn’t it leaves the rest of the defense exposed. And although Fabinho was solid for most of the games, when he made a mistake it was usually a big blunder. Fabinho would routinely get caught upfield on the counterattack and had a bad habit of turning the ball over at the worst times imaginable.

Most memorable moment of 2016: These two clips from the first match against FC Dallas show the essence of Fabinho’s 2016. Here’s Fabinho getting back on defense and making a great play to clear the ball off of the line:

And here he is getting stripped of the ball and falling down while surrendering a goal.