Yedlin's former coach weighs in on the defender's move to Newcastle

Yedlin's former coach weighs in on the defender's move to Newcastle

Seattle Sounder's ex-coach Sigi Schmid gives his opinion on Yedlin and his move at Championship club so far, and he does not hold back.

Katie Mishner

Having got his foot in the door to English football through a loan spell at Sunderland, USA international DeAndre Yedlin opted to give his signature to rivals Newcastle United in the summer of 2016. 

While manager Rafa Benitez still seemingly prefers ​Vernon Anita as Newcastle's right-back, as he has proved to be a more versatile option, Yedlin has proved his worth. Quick and with an ability to exploit his opposition's flank, going forward Yedlin fills St James' Park with excitement, however his defensive abilities are yet to win Rafa over into giving the American a permanent spot in the starting XI.

The defender's former coach Sigi Schmid, now Seattle Sounder's ex-manager, has given his opinion on the progress of the player he coached during his time in the MLS, now that he is playing for the Toon in the Championship.

Room for improvement

In a conversation with Schmid was sceptical of Yedlin, believing that he has to finish his game holistically before he becomes a frequent feature in Newcastle's squad: “Consistency is a key and the manager does not feel 100-per-cent confident with him yet.” 

The coach continued with some praise: “He has improved some of his deficiencies but needs to continue to grow those areas."

Schmid highlighted specific areas of the right back's game and in the German manager's opinion: “His defending needed to improve and he needed to push through some adversity to prepare for the adversity he would face in England."

Pulling no punches, his critical assessment of his former player's game continued: "His final passing and decisions with the ball need to improve too.”

Too much, too soon

Yedlin has started nine games out of the 25 and in the interview, Schmid continued to say: “The move was probably too early, he needed to grow his game a bit more and mature. If he comes back now he will probably not go back [to Europe]" he continued.

In his conclusion Schmid, who left Sounders on mutual agreement last July, commented on the salary jump in England: “As a right-back, it would be hard to find an MLS team willing to pay the salary he might need."

He added: "He would want to be a Designated Player. That might be difficult. Otherwise, it is a huge cut in pay.”