MLS release All-Star Fan XI, US national team dominates
On Wednesday Major League Soccer announced the eleven players selected by fans to compete in the 2014 MLS All-Star Game in August.
Collecting votes from fans over Twitter and on MLSsoccer.com, after a ballot of 152 players nominated by media members was released, the league confirmed the eleven All-Stars who will face off against Bayern Munich in Portland on August 6.
There was a heavy U.S. national team presence as eight of the eleven players are members of Jurgen Klinsmann’s squad. Nick Rimando, DeAndre Yedlin, Omar Gonzalez, Matt Besler, Clint Dempsey, Michael Bradley, Kyle Beckerman and Graham Zusi all played for the U.S. at the World Cup this summer in Brazil.
Players who were deemed unlucky to miss out on the vote were MLS’ top scorer Bradley Wright-Phillips, while Steven Beitashour, Júlio César, Tim Cahill, Aurelien Collin and Jermain Defoe just missed out on the fan vote.
Despite these eleven players being selected by the fans, they are not guaranteed to be in the starting lineup as Don Garber’s two All-Star picks, and players that received at least two votes from their fellow players, all based on player availability and tactical considerations. Timbers head coach Caleb Porter will name the rest of his All-Star game-day roster on July 19 during halftime of the Sporting Kansas City-LA Galaxy game.
From there, MLS players will determine the remainder of the 32 All-Stars named annually per the collective bargaining agreement, otherwise known as the “inactive roster.” The final list of 32 All-Stars (4 goalkeepers, 8 defenders, 13 midfielders, 7 forwards) will be announced on MLSsoccer.com on Aug. 6.
MLS All-Star Fan XI
Goalkeeper: Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
Defenders: DeAndre Yedlin (Seattle Sounders), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City)
Midfielders: Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
Forwards: Thierry Henry (New York Red Bulls), Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy), Obafemi Martins (Seattle Sounders)