The defense gets credit for shutouts. Attackers get the glory of goals and assists. But at the center of it all, Crew midfielder Wil Trapp has been a key asset in his club's recent run of form.
Sitting in front of the backline as the Black & Gold's holding midfielder, the 20-year-old provides the distribution to a front four of Dominic Oduro, Federico Higuaín, Bernardo Anor and Jairo Arrieta in Brian Bliss' up-tempo attack while also sharing defensive responsibilities in the middle of the field.
"The position [Trapp] plays is a key role for the whole team: completing the passes, connecting passes, helping the defense and supporting the attack," Anor says of his teammate. "He gets involved in the game pretty often. He has to be clean with the ball, and he's done a great job."
On the ball, Trapp has become one of the best in MLS at his position. Keeping the ball for his team in 74.8 percent of his touches, Trapp ranks 24th in the League in maintaining possession. That rate is just one percent less than some of the top holding midfielders in MLS like Kyle Beckerman, Osvaldo Alonso, Oriol Rosell and Juninho.
Trapp's ability to keep the ball has been vital to the Crew's recent push for the playoffs.
"He's a stabilizing factor in there," Bliss said of Trapp. "He reads the game well. When you give him the ball, you know pretty much he's going to hold on to it. His possession rate is very good.
"He still has a chance to play some balls forward that are maybe a little bit more speculative, which is good," Bliss continued. "His general reading of the game and tactical knowledge in there allows the other guys to do what they do because he's reliable."
In the midst of a three-match winning streak and a heated playoff race, the Crew will continue to count on Trapp on being a calming presence in the midfield. The Black & Gold return to action Saturday against Sporting Kansas City at Crew Stadium (TICKETS).