Average Ranking: 16.38
Highest Ranking: 9
Lowest Ranking: 30
Armen: 20. Andrew Wiedeman is a different kind of Toronto FC star.
Sure, he lacks the stats to make him a contender for a Wall of Fame spot, plus, he's never really commanded much of an on-field presence like Thierry Henry or Chris Wondolowski does. However, in the locker room, Wiedeman is king.
In his second season with Toronto FC, Wiedeman was expected to play a depth role with the club but ended up playing in 14 league games this year. He started nine of those games and managed to bag a pair of goals this season, too, including a Columbus Crew-beating last-minute goal three months ago. He wasn't the only one to do so, though - Jonathan Osorio managed to score a late equalizer, giving Toronto a 1-1 tie in added time. But, a cross into the box in the 94th minute and an outstretched leg saw Wiedeman slot the ball past the keeper and into the back of the net and he was off to the stands to hug some fans.
It was, in truth, the most thrilling goal of the season. In the rain, at BMO Field, Wiedeman gave Toronto FC the gift of a win well deserved.
Wiedeman also came up big against the New England Revolution. He started up top for Toronto and played the full match. New England took an early, 2nd-minute lead courtesy of Diego Fagundez, but Wiedeman would have none of that. His equalizing effort was another well-placed shot off a fortuitous series of events; Richard Eckersley crossed the ball into the box from a free-kick at the midfield line. The ball took a bounce and found Osorio, who struck towards goal but found the foot of a Revolution defender. That deflection landed at Doneil Henry's feet, and the young Canadian defender quickly found Wiedeman a few feet ahead of him.
Wiedeman turned, shot and scored, giving Toronto FC the 1-1 draw.
I spoke to Wiedeman about the season that was, and asked him what he enjoyed about 2013:
"Playing forward! That’s the one!" Wiedeman told RedNation Online. "I was a forward coming out of college and this was probably the first year that I’ve actually played it. Even in preseason, I was more of a wide mid, so that was good. I would have liked a little more production but going from the first half of the season to how it ended, I wouldn’t have expected that so I’m happy with that."
Wiedeman has been used as a right midfielder in the past but played up top the whole season under Ryan Nelsen.
Here's where Wiedeman really shines, though: Twitter.
Wiedeman is, by far, the best Twitter user on the team. He's a joker at heart. When he's not picking the locker room music, he's posting jokes on the bulletin board, or poking fun at his friend, Jeremy Hall.
It would be difficult to sum up Wiedeman's Twitter genius over the course of the year in a few tweets. They say you're only as good as your last performance, though, and here's a Tweet of Wiedeman's from just a few days ago:
Maury commercial on TV. They're having tiger cubs on the show today. I'll be really surprised if that paternity test comes back positive.— Andrew Wiedeman (@awiedeman3) November 21, 2013
Genius, pure and simple. Following Wiedeman (@awiedeman3) is a must for any Toronto FC fan. He throws regular contests, is interactive with fans, and is a stand up guy, too. He also (probably) wins the award for best-dressed at the club, something Wiedeman says he learned from Jeff Cunningham and Danny Califf.
Wiedeman is good locker room quality, and as a depth forward, he's certainly a better option than many players Toronto FC has employed; he himself gave Toronto FC four points, which is more than many can say on the team. For that alone, his spot at 15 is well deserved. The comedy factor is just an added bonus!
Duncan: 14. On $123,000 last year, coming off a Generation Adidas contract, he was unsurprisingly exposed to the re-entry draft and unsurprisingly not taken in the first round. Before the second round he'd re-signed for TFC at what turned out to be a much more sensible $65,000, and I think he earned that this year. It took him a while to make it into the first team, but when he did, he did ok. Scored in the first leg of the Voyageurs Cup tie (yes it was raining that night), a very cool and composed finish, though he did blow a great chance late on that totally would have put the tie away, 3-0? no way they'd have come back from that right?
Got a couple of goals in league play as well, providing what was by far the best moment of the season with the winner against Columbus, and he generally impressed me, I was a bit surprised to see he only had 2 league goals. I'd be fine with him being back next year as a depth option at that price. If I was a bigger man, I'd say he deserves to have the modern era jokes retired. But I'm not. As for his twitter, here's my favourite from him this year, a quite magnificent comeback to a critic.
Dave: 19. He scored a few goals in limited playing time which was great considering how badly TFC needed goals this season. Still not sold on him being anything more than just the deepest of depth on the roster moving into the 2014 season but at least when a chance comes his way he can finish them which is more than we can say for someone like Braun.
James: 18. Quietly had a rather strong season, looks a little lost positionally at times, and needs to work on his link play - but no complaints about the finishing.
Kristin: 15. He only scores when he's wet! Best known (at least to me) as Andy the Eye Candy, Wiedeman is still struggling to shake his 'best finisher in the modern era' tag that Paul Mariner draped on him last season. Certainly not a starter and rarely a finisher (unless it's monsooning) but works hard and is occasionally clever on twitter. Nothing wrong with keeping him as a bench player but should never, ever be a starter.
Angus Chung: "Best finisher of the modern era". Fair or not, that is going to be the defining legacy of Andrew Wiedeman at TFC. He actually seemed to get a bit better this year and improved on his goal total which is always a good thing. The fact that we are so thin at forward that he has a good chance of being in the starting XI just depresses me.
Ferantez He is at the moment a good bench player… I think he will become a starter in a couple of years…
Jon Spratt: I will say, for all the "modern era" jokes, he actually does have a nose for goal in tight; it's just the rest of his skills that are not up to par for MLS.
Killinghurst: Provided TFC with the highlight of the season in the form of the go ahead goal in the rain game. Also, he's by far the best bro in the league.
Mark_HSV: At least one really great goal. Probably the best looking player on the team, so at least he might help bring in the female fans.
Michaelvee: The Greatest Finisher of the Modern Era does have a few things going for him as an MLS player. He can shoot hard, he can work hard, but otherwise, Weideman is pretty run of the mill. That rain-game goal was pretty fantastic.
Mweezy: He tries. He can't finish, but he really does try
Prizby: Does poor man's Chad Barrett work here? Hard worker, seems out of place though? He does have funny tweets from time to time though.
Red Wine Roz: Would rate him higher if he was wet all the time.
Robert Snider: He struck me a bit like Brockie although he ran hot and cold depending on something not readily obvious. I forget his salary but I think he's manageable bench strength, and we can still use the Captain shorty pants/ wiki jokes.
Schtevetown: I think you should have 5 strikers on an MLS roster. He could be #5 next year.
Spence Snell: He also had a good game in the Canadian Championship - he is as useful as his salary would suggest, which isn't a bad thing.
The Yorkies: Like a reverse Mogwai - only useful when wet. Cheap, very low depth at best.
Tyler: I am a big fan of Wiedeman actually (shocking I know) but hear me out. Wiedeman is always positive. Mariner and Nelsen have both spoken highly of how he acts off the field and I can only imagine that this is encouragement for the rest of the team. He is on a very affordable salary and has been a decent bench striker scoring some pretty important goals over the past two years. I think it would be a massive shame to lose him and I think he likely contributes a lot more to the team than we see.
Yohan: A former TFC supporter's whipping boy, I respect him more for taking his criticisms (most of them were Mariner's fault), kept his head down and worked hard for his minutes. He's like incredibly poor version of Inzaghi, that he's a poacher with limited finishing ability and once in a while, he'll be at the right place at the right time. His goal against Columbus in a monsoon will be a memory to treasure.