Jordan Morris cites Chicharito, Luis Suarez as influences on style

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The U.S. forward says the Mexican star is among the players who he looks to as an example for movement in the box.

U.S. national team forward Jordan Morris says Mexico forward Chicharito and Uruguay star Luis Suarez are among the influences on his style of play.

The Seattle Sounders striker helped his team to an MLS Cup title last season but is hoping to increase his role there and with the U.S. squad this year. It should come as no surprise that the former Stanford student is doing so by watching how top central forwards move in the box when he's watching matches.

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"I watch as a casual fan, but I also definitely try to watch guys who play my position," Morris told The Ringer's soccer podcast. "They’re the poachers in the box who make these movements, or don’t make these movements, and how they get so wide open in the box to finish off these plays. For me as a forward, that’s always part of my game. What I’m trying to get better at is my finishing and in the box trying to be more of a poacher. 

"So I look at Chicharito, Suarez, their movement and what they do to get open and make space for themselves and of course the finishing touch they put on it. I definitely like to watch guys like that to see how I can improve my game."

Morris scored the U.S. team's first goal of 2017, combining with Benny Feilhaber to finish off the winning goal in a friendly against Jamaica earlier this month.

And while Morris benefited from a pass from a player that new coach Bruce Arena has welcomed back into the Stars and Stripes after former boss Jurgen Klinsmann froze Feilhaber out, the 22-year-old says both coaches put an emphasis on tough training sessions to prepare players for the rigor of international play.

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"Honestly, they’re both pretty intense, both work you hard and get your heart rate up, trying to get your fitness going," he said. "Bruce’s sessions, they’re a little bit shorter I think and compact, but you get a lot of work in and definitely feel the effects afterward because it’s a tough training. I guess that’s a pretty big difference."

Morris is now in preseason action with the Sounders ahead of the team beginning its MLS Cup defense March 4 at the Houston Dynamo.

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