MLS MVP Race Heating Up

MLS MVP Race Heating Up

  • Posted by Drew Epperley
  • On September 8, 2011
  • 2011 MLS MVP Race, 2011 MLS Season, 2011 MVP Race, Brad Davis, Brek Shea, Dwayne De Rosario, Features, Landon Donovan, Mauro Rosales, Sebastien Le Toux, Thierry Henry

Brek Shea sits atop the MVP race, can he hold on to it? (Getty Images)

With only a few weeks left in the season the awards race in Major League Soccer is pretty dang hot. The MVP race alone is very interesting this season. In my book if I had to vote today for the top three in the MVP race would be fairly simple but there are a few dark horse candidates to keep a watch on.

The Top Contenders

Brek Shea, M, FC Dallas: This one is fairly simple. If Shea isn’t at the top of most folks list right now it means they either hate Dallas or don’t watch the league at all. The second one probably speaks more truth than anything if someone doesn’t have Shea in their top three once it is time to vote. Shea has done everything right for Dallas since the injury of last year’s MVP, David Ferreira. He’s scored plenty of big goals and has come up with a few quality assists. Simply put, Dallas is nothing without his service from the wings.

Mauro Rosales, M, Seattle Sounders FC: In a way Rosales has really just come on strong in the last two months but overall he is a huge reason why the Sounders are in the thick of things in the Supporter’s Shield race. His five goals and ten assists are something to marvel over but for me it comes down to his distribution and setting up the Sounders’ attack. I don’t see Lamar Neagle or Mike Fucito getting the goals that they have gotten this year without Rosales. Bold statement to make, sure, but it is one I feel pretty good about.

Landon Donovan, M, LA Galaxy: Of course, another season with Donovan in the MVP mix. His 11 goals and three assists will keep him in the discussion even though he hasn’t played as many minutes as Shea or some of the others here.

Still In The Mix:

Thierry Henry, F, New York Red Bulls: The New York Red Bulls’ season goes with Henry. As he goes, the club goes. He may lead the league in goals scored with 12 and have four assists on the year ┬ábut the way his club has played these last couple of months are hurting his MVP chances. He needs to continue to score goals and help get his club in the playoffs to get this award.

Brad Davis, M, Houston Dynamo: Another player who’s team goes as they do. Davis is always overlooked but there is no reason why he should be. His league-leading 13 assists are the main reason why the Dynamo are even in the playoff hunt to begin with. You want a valuable player to a club, look no further than to Davis.

David Beckham, M, LA Galaxy: Donovan and Beckham will likely cancel one another out in this race but consider Beckham’s stats at the moment, 12 assists and two goals isn’t bad at all. To be fair, this has been his best season to date as a member of the Galaxy.

Jack Jewsbury, M, Portland Timbers: You want some good stats? Seven goals and eight assists. That’s quality folks. Portland would be a really bad expansion team without Captain Jack.

Dwayne De Rosario, M, DC United: Another player with monster stats on the season, nine goals and eight assists. What will hurt him is he’s played on three teams this season. That really shouldn’t be the case as he’s really helped improve United’s offense.

Some Potential Dark horses:

Dominic Oduro, F, Chicago Fire: Hard to ignore Oduro right now. He’s scoring loads of goals (and missing loads too). He’s a long shot at best but he’s worth mentioning.

Sebastien Le Toux, M, Philadelphia Union: I think if he can continue his scoring (six goals on the year) to go with his assist numbers (eight assists), he’ll easily move up this order here. Last night’s great come back performance against New England was a sign that Le Toux will be in the mix.

Kyle Beckerman, M, Real Salt Lake: With Javier Morales going down earlier in the season, it was Beckerman who had to step up and be the midfield general. Looking at things today, RSL isn’t far away from an automatic bid into the playoffs.