Of course I believe it, I've seen what he can do. Do you really think Freddy has less skill with the ball than fellow left mids Beasley or Convey? That's not what's holding him back, though he has plenty of other things to work on. JohnR could be right that he's in his own category and not something to generalize from. But, I rather suspect it's not a coincidence he started out in Ghana, and he wouldn't have been the same kind of player if he'd spent his whole life in DC. I completely agree--how could I not--that picking players based on their ethnicity is dumb. But that's not to say that cultural groups of players don't have, on average, certain attributes. You can see the proof in the summer of every year that's divisible by four. Apparently Hackworth is finding useful attributes in African immigrant populations. What of it? So are the French and English teams. In days of yore the USMNT had some use for a Uruguayan and a couple guys of Argentine origin. Now there are a couple of twentysomething prospects who spent part of their youth in Brazil. Again, probably not a coincidence. It's not just a matter of expanding the talent pool, though that helps too. I think there are also things these kids bring in that are, GENERALLY speaking, missing from American soccer culture. Heavily recruiting immigrants is just a stopgap until we can change the wider culture.