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Eddie Ababio: Heir apparent to Kosuke Kimura?

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When the Rapids came up during draft day with GA player Michael Tetteh still on the board, it looked like the future left back was going to be the selection for Colorado. When they picked Eddie Ababio instead there was a bit of confusion from the Rapids fanbase, although not a full on riot.

In my interview with Charlie Wright he mentioned to me that Ababio was the pick partially because at the combine the Colorado scouts and coaches saw more athleticism and talent coming from Ababio than Tetteh. I have another theory for the Ababio pick which is perhaps not true and not something that crossed the minds of the Rapids front office as they made their selection, but I think could perhaps give some more purpose to the pick in the minds of some of the more disgruntled Rapids fans.

Kosuke Kimura is the current Rapids right back, and has slowly but surely molded himself into a perfect RB for Colorado's system of play. He's a fairly athletic, quick attacking fullback, who knows how to get up and put service into the box for his strikers as well as having the occasional shot at the goal. His defending itself isn't the best, as he gets bailed out occasionally by his great center backs Marvell Wynne and Drew Moor, but he is called more for his offensive ability than his decent if not spectacular defense.

For anyone who knows Kosuke Kimura's life story, it's fairly obvious that as a boy who just wanted to grow up and be a professional footballer his life dream certainly culminates in caps for the Japanese national team. With the newfound press and the newfound skills that have come into Kosuke's career, it seems inevitable that there may be a call for our beloved right back to come to his native land of Japan's J-League. It may not be soon but as the 26 year old comes into the prime years of his career it may be sooner than we'd like. I hate to keep the old "MLS is a poaching ground for other leagues" meme in play but in this case it is perfectly justified.

The pick of Eddie Ababio, a right sided player, might be for the consideration of Kosuke's future. As Tetteh is a left back - a position that the Rapids already have a very young, promising prospect at with Anthony Wallace - it makes plenty of sense to take the guy that the Rapids not only liked, but who plays the position of the defensive back who is probably most likely to leave soon. If Kimura leaves to continue his dream in Japan, the Ababio pick and giving him time to play in the developmental league will look just as good if not better than it already does. As a very athletic, very fast attacking full back with questionable but good potential on his defensive moves, Ababio already reminds me of a slightly better Kimura.

Kimura came up through the developmental league to be on the first team, Ababio's chance to do the same with at least a full year before he is needed has already given him a great shot at being Kosuke's heir to the proverbial throne.