Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The 2011 MLS All Stars

The 2011 MLS All Star team that will take on Manchester United on July 27th at Red Bull Arena has been announced. The 22 man roster features 4 players from the Houston Dynamo, and 3 apiece from the high profile L.A. Galaxy and New York Red Bulls. 7 of the 22 players are internationals with Colombia, England, France, Grenada, Jamaica and Mexico all getting representation. Here's some quick blurbs on the All Stars:

Goalkeepers

Tally Hall - Houston Dynamo - The 26 year old Hall was drafted by the Galaxy in 2007, but started his PRO career with Esbjerg in Denmark instead. After two years abroad he came back to the U.S. and joined the Dynamo. He's finally established himself as the starter in Houston after appearing in just 5 regular season games in 2009 and 2010. In 20 starts this year he is 5-6-9 allowing just 1.15 goals per game with 4 shutouts. The San Diego State alum is perhaps most famous for his Champions League goal against El Salvador's Isidro Metap√°n in 2009.

Faryd Mondragon - Philadelphia Union - The 40 year Colombian has been well traveled through his professional career playing in Turkey, Colombia, Paraguay, Argentina, Spain, France and Germany. He was Colombia's starting goalkeeper during the 1998 World Cup and has 50 career appearances for the Colombian National Team. Mondragon joined the Union before the 2011 season and has 7 shutouts and 19 starts while allowing 1.58 goals per game this year while posting a record of 8-4-7.

Photo Credit: ontd-football.livejournal.com

Defenders

Corey Ashe - Houston Dynamo - The 25 year old former UNC Tar Heel was the 26th pick in the 2007 MLS Super Draft. Ashe has spent his entire 5 year with the Dynamo notching 1 goal and 11 assists in 117 career matches. He has 19 appearances including 17 starts in 2011, but the 5'4" back has yet to score a point. Ashe has experience playing for both the U-17 and U-23 U.S. National Teams.

Matt Besler - Sporting Kansas City - The 24 year old former All American out of Notre Dame is in his 3rd year with Kansas City after being taken with the 8th pick in the 2009 MLS Super Draft. He has started 17 games for Sporting this year and scored his first MLS goal against the Fire on March 26th. Besler led the MLS in test-message votes received.

Geoff Cameron - Houston Dynamo - The 26 year old defender has started 19 games for the Dynamo this year tying a career high with 3 goals and adding 3 assists. Cameron has spent his entire 4 year MLS career with the Dynamo after being drafted in the 3rd round of the 2008 Super Draft. He made an appearance for the U.S. National team as a substitute in a friendly match against El Salvador in February of 2010.

Bobby Convey - San Jose Earthquakes - The 28 year old Convey started out in MLS at the age of 16 with D.C. United. After 5 seasons with D.C. he headed overseas to play for Reading in England. He appeared in 98 regular season games over 5 seasons for Reading before coming back to MLS as a member of the San Jose Earthquakes. He had a career high 10 assists for the Quakes last year, and has 1 goal and 2 assists for San Jose in 14 appearances in 2011. Convey has made 46 appearances for the U.S. National Team and scored a goal in the 2003 Gold Cup against El Salvador. Convey has played 157 career MLS matches scoring 11 goals and tallying 30 assists.

Sean Franklin - Los Angeles Galaxy - The 2008 MLS Rookie of the Year is in his 4th season with the Galaxy. Franklin has made 20 appearances including 18 starts for the Galaxy this year bringing him up to 85 career appearances and while he has 8 assists he's yet to score his first MLS goal. Franklin made his debut for the MLS Senior National Team in January against Chile.

Jamison Olave - Real Salt Lake - The 2010 MLS Defender of the Year is in his 4th year with Real Salt Lake. The 30 year old Colombian has made 13 starts for Salt Lake this year scoring 1 goal and notching his first career MLS assist. He has 9 career goals in 88 appearances since joining Salt Lake from Deportivo Cali.

 Photo Credit: zimbio.com

Heath Pearce - Chivas USA - The 26 year old Pearce is in his first season with Chivas USA after spending his first two MLS seasons with FC Dallas. Pearce started his professional career overseas in Denmark with Nordsjælland and from there he would transfer to German side Hansa Rostock. After a mutual falling out, he returned to the U.S. and was picked up by Dallas in September of 2009. Pearce has 32 career appearances with the U.S. National Team, and was one of the final 7 players cut from the 2010 World Cup team.

Tim Ream - New York Red Bulls - The 23 year old Ream has a bright future. As a rookie last year he started 30 games for the Red Bulls and his strong play earned him a call-up to the National Team following the World Cup. He's continued to play well in his second MLS season and recently appeared for the U.S. at the Gold Cup where he started a pair of matches in the back. He has scored one goal in 45 career matches with the Red Bulls.


Midfielders

Kyle Beckerman - Real Salt Lake - The 29 year old Beckerman is in his 12th MLS season having spent time with the Miami Fusion and Colorado Rapids before joining Real Salt Lake in 2007 and two years later he helped lead them to a surprising upset of the L.A. Galaxy in the championship. Beckerman has also seen time with the U.S. National Team notching 12 CAPs since 2007 including a spot on the 2009 Gold Cup roster. He scored his only international goal at the Gold Cup against Panama. In his career he has 22 goals and 28 assists in 257 career matches. This will be his 3rd All Star Game.

David Beckham - Los Angeles Galaxy - The 36 year old Beckham is in the midst of perhaps his best MLS season notching 2 goals and 8 assists in 16 appearances, 15 of them starts. The long time star for Manchester United, Real Madrid, and England hasn't had the successful MLS career that many hoped he would, but he's certainly still able to impact a game. In 64 career regular season matches he has 11 goals and 24 assists.

Brad Davis - Houston Dynamo - The 29 year old Davis has 3 goals and a league high 9 assists for the Dynamo this year in 20 starts. Has been with the Dynamo franchise since they were still the Earthquakes starting with them back in 2005. Over his 10 year career he has 34 goals and 73 assists in 242 matches. He was a member of the U.S.'s 2005 Gold Cup team and he converted the clinching penalty kick in the Gold Cup Final against Panama.

Photo Credit: zimbio.com

Jack Jewsbury - Portland Timbers - The 30 year old Jewsbury spent the last 8 seasons with Kansas City before joining the expansion Timbers this year. In 18 starts for Portland he has already set a career high in goals with 5 and chipped in 6 assists, one shy of his career high set in 2008. Over his 9 year career Jewsbury has scored 19 goals and added 26 assists in 213 matches.

Shalrie Joseph - New England Revolution - The 33 year old Grenadian was the 14th overall pick in the 2002 MLS Super Draft. He's spent his entire 9 year MLS career with the Revs tallying 33 goals and 31 assists in 228 career matches. He has 5 goals and an assist in 17 starts this year, but his best season was in 2009 when he finished with 8 goals and 8 assists. He has appeared 30 times for Grenada's National Team including during the 2009 Gold Cup and has scored 3 goals for them.

Nick LaBrocca - Chivas USA - Playing for his 3rd team in 3 years, the 26 year old LaBrocca is having the best season of his career. LaBrocca actually has more goals this year (6) than he did in his first four seasons combined (5). The Rutgers alum has played for the U.S. U-20 and U-23 teams, and while he has trained with the Senior National Team, he has never made an appearance.

Forwards

Juan Agudelo - New York Red Bulls - The 18 year old striker has just 7 starts for New York this year, but already has 4 goals in his first full MLS season. That to go along with 2 goals for the National team in friendlies against South Africa and Argentina in the wake of the World Cup and he's quickly made a name for himself. Played extensively during the 2011 Gold Cup, especially following the injury to Jozy Altidore, and while he didn't score his high work rate was invaluable. U.S. fans are hopeful that Agudelo is the answer to our woes up front.

Omar Bravo - Sporting Kansas City - The 31 year old Mexican striker made an immediate impact in his first MLS season scoring a pair of goals in his debut against Chivas USA. Injuries have limited to just 13 appearances in 2011, but he has played well when healthy tallying 4 goals and 2 assists. Bravo was a long time member of Guadalajara for whom he scored over 100 goals in his career. Bravo also has 15 goals for the Mexican National Team including a pair of goals at the 2006 World Cup against Iran, and 3 goals at the 2007 Copa America in wins over Ecuador, Paraguay and Uruguay.

Omar Cummings - Colorado Rapids - The 29 year old Jamaican striker had a breakout year for the MLS Champion rapids in 2010 scoring a career high 14 goals. Limited by injuries this year he has been able to start just 10 games scoring only twice and adding a pair of assists. In his 5 year career spent entirely with Colorado, Cummings has 32 goals and 21 assists in 107 games. Cummings has appeared 23 times for Jamaica's national team scoring 6 goals the most recent one coming in a friendly against El Salvador in March.

Landon Donovan - Los Angeles Galaxy - The face of Major League Soccer is enjoying another productive season with 9 goals (tied for the league lead) and an assist despite only playing 13 games. Donovan has 112 goals and 92 assists in his MLS career spent with San Jose and Los Angeles. He continues to star for the U.S. National Team as well scoring his 46th goal (most all-time) against Mexico in the Gold Cup Final. He is also the MLS all-time leader in postseason goals.

Photo Credit: laist.com

Thierry Henry - New York Red Bulls - The 33 year old Frenchman is tied with Donovan for the scoring lead with 9 goals after scoring just 2 in 11 games a year ago. The former Arsenal and Barcelona striker also scored 51 goals for France over the years. He scored 226 goals for Arsenal in all competitions between 1997 and 2007.

Chris Wondolowski - San Jose Earthquakes - The 28 year old Wondo broke out last year with 18 goals after scoring just 7 times in his first 5 MLS seasons. He hasn't been as prolific in 2011, but has still scored 6 times and earned a spot on the U.S.'s Gold Cup roster. He has a career high 2 assists this year for San Jose in 15 starts.

Inactive All Stars

Kasey Keller - Seattle Sounders - The 41 year old Keller will miss the All Star game due to conflicts with Seattle's CONCACAF Champions League schedule. Keller is 10-4-8 this year with 6 shutouts and has allowed just 23 goals in 22 matches.

Omar Gonzalez - Los Angeles Galazy - The 2009 MLS Rookie of the Year will miss the All Star Game due to injury. He's started 18 games for L.A. this season and scored his 4th career MLS regular season goal.

Rafa Marquez - New York Red Bulls - The 32 year old Mexican defender is in his second season with the Red Bulls. He was injured in the Gold Cup Final against the United States and will be forced to miss the All Star Game. He has made 9 starts for New York this season tallying one assist.

Brek Shea - FC Dallas - The 21 year Shea, like Keller, will miss the All Star game due to Champions League conflicts. Shea leads Dallas with a career high 8 goals this season in 19 starts.

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