Portland Timbers forward Lucas Melano comes in at No. 10 on the 2016 MLS 24 Under 24 list. The list, an annual examination of the best young players in the league, has previously recognized Timbers players such as Darlington Nagbe (#10 in 2011, #15 in 2012, #1 in 2013), Alvas Powell (#22 in 2015), and Darren Mattocks (#1 in 2012, #13 in 2013).
Says one MLS technical staffer who was interviewed for the series about Melano, "He's an absolute handful. I think when he's in the field, he's a pest. He's one of those guys that when you're scouting, doing game plans, you have to worry about him because of his pace.”
In 2016, Melano has scored three goals and added five assists in his second season in the league. A Designated Player signing in 2015 from Argentine Primera side Lanús, Melano scored the series-clinching goal in the 2015 Western Conference Championship against FC Dallas to help spark the team to the 2015 MLS Cup final.