Why Jermaine Jones chose Colorado, and how they might line up

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Jermaine Jones was officially introduced as a Colorado midfielder on Wednesday, five days after the Rapids acquired him from New England for a first-round draft pick and general allocation money.

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Jones had been in a bit of player purgatory thanks to a six-match suspension that extends FIFA wide, meaning a return to Germany in January was hard to pull off.

So why Colorado, besides money?

From ColoradoRapids.com:

“The whole package, what I got here. It’s close to home, to L.A. But then you have a real soccer stadium, it’s not like what we had in Boston. Then you have a young team, where it’s 16 new players and you see the club wants to build something. That’s a key point, too, for me. I’m a player with a lot of experience and I will try to get that into this team and make stuff happen and the club comes back to the playoffs.”

Jones is suspended for six matches after an incident with referee Mark Geiger last season. How will Pablo Mastroeni use the big man once he’s available? A new formation and system could work for the marauding midfielder, but this is what we could see if Mastroeni wants to keep his 4-2-3-1 going:

MacMath

Hairston — Watts — Sjoberg — Miller

Jones — Cronin

Gashi — Powers — Badji

K. Doyle

There’s also the chance that Mastroeni opts for a more traditional 4-4-2, maybe in diamond formation, but that hinges on how they want to use Shkelzen Gashi. The 27-year-old Albanian led the Swiss Super League in goals in each of the previous two seasons, and operates as either a forward or an attacking mid.

And what about Dillon Powers, who was expected to play a little deeper this season? With Sam Cronin, Powers and Jones, there will be a need to be creative. It could even resemble a bit of what the USMNT has done with Jones:

MacMath

Hairston — Watts — Sjoberg — Miller

Cronin — Jones

Gashi — Powers

Badji — K. Doyle

Thoughts?