Nashville SC 2020 Report Card: Aníbal Godoy

We’re continuing our Nashville SC report cards with a look at midfielder Aníbal Godoy.

Position: Defensive midfielder
Matches played: 20
Minutes played: 1,682
Goals: 1
Assists: 0
Goals added: -0.07 (52nd among MLS midfielders)
xPass Score: 45.38 (3rd among MLS midfielders)
xG+xA: 1.37 (55th among MLS midfielders)
Average Speedway Soccer rating: 7.2
Average WhoScored rating: 7.0

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Graphic courtesy American Soccer Analysis

What went right in 2020?

Nashville spent big to get Godoy, and he largely repaid that on the field. One of the best passers of the ball in MLS, Godoy instantly formed a strong partnership with Dax McCarty that was one of the key elements of the expansion team.

Always strong in the tackle, Godoy’s passing range was a major part of Nashville’s identity on the ball. He was consistently able to switch the point of attack and relieve pressure, and while Nashville didn’t often dominate in possession, he was key to opening up space.

Godoy developed a solid understanding with McCarty in the double pivot role, alternating pushing forward and staying back. While Nashville’s backline gets most of the praise for their stellar defense, Godoy and McCarty were crucial to this, breaking up attacks before they became dangerous and shielding the back four.

What went wrong in 2020?

Godoy missed nine matches in 2019 with complications following an abdominal surgery, and Nashville hoped most of those injury issues were behind him. However, Godoy missed three matches in October with an undisclosed issue, and a hamstring issue flared up in their playoff win over Miami. It kept him out for the remainder of the postseason.

At 30, Godoy was consistently able to play 90 minutes for Nashville, and is one of the most fit players on the team. However, minor injuries seem to pile up, and while it’s not time to panic, it’s definitely something to keep an eye on.

What needs to improve in 2021?

Health is the main issue for Godoy, especially with the 2021 season likely to be another condensed schedule. He’s also likely to see plenty of international duty for Panama this season. Staying healthy when he’s with Nashville and being able to get on the field in key moments will be crucial.

Most memorable moment

Godoy scored a banger with his weaker right foot to give Nashville a 1-0 win over Inter Miami.

2020 Grade: B

Author: Ben Wrightis the Director of Soccer Content and a Senior MLS Contributor for Broadway Sports covering Nashville SC and the US National Team. Previously Ben was the editor and a founder of Speedway Soccer, where he has covered Nashville SC and their time in USL before journeying to Major League Soccer since 2018. Raised in Louisville, KY Ben grew up playing before a knee injury ended his competitive career. When he is not talking soccer he is probably producing music, drinking coffee or hanging out with his wife and kids. Mastodon

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