Galaxy’s Donovan Named U.S. Player of Year for Third Time

i-676fbff03cbbbea618047e662bb1584d-laandondon.jpgPhoto: Getty Images

Was there ever any doubt the Redlands native would win the award announced today yet again? The Galaxy and U.S. National Team playmaker also won in 2003 and 2004.

From the U.S. Soccer press release:

The 27-year old, a former Young Male Athlete of the Year in 2000, played a large part in the USA’s qualification for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, scoring three goals and providing nine assists during the Final Round of qualifying. The forward was involved in 12 of the USA’s 19 Final Round goals as the team advanced to its sixth consecutive World Cup finals.

Along the way Donovan added two more records to his already impressive international rsum. He took his career qualifying caps to 35, surpassing Keller, Claudio Reyna and Eddie Pope for first all-time and also moved into first on the all-time qualifying goal chart. Donovan’s 12 goals in World Cup qualifiers give him two more than former Men’s National Team forward Brian McBride. Donovan was also a vital part of the USA’s run to the Confederations Cup Final in June, playing 90 minutes in all five games while registering two goals and one assist. His goal in the final against Brazil was recently voted by the fans as the Best Goal during the 2009 Best of U.S. Soccer Awards.

At the club level Donovan excelled with the revitalized L.A. Galaxy. He earned Major League Soccer MVP honors for the first time in his career and helped the Galaxy win the Western Conference championship en route to a trip to MLS Cup in Seattle.

“It’s a great accomplishment and a great award,” said Donovan. “I’m very proud of it and knowing that the fans vote on it, your teammates vote on it, and your colleagues vote on it is very special to me.”

“It was a great year for me individually, it was a great year for the L.A. Galaxy and the turnaround we had, and an incredible year for our national team with the Confederations Cup and how we did in qualifying. We look forward to next year. It’s going to be a lot of fun.”

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About Nick Green

South Bay-based Los Angeles News Group columnist and blogger Nick Green writes about soccer at the 100 Percent Soccer blog at www.insidesocal.com/soccer and craft beer at the Beer Goggles blog at www.insidesocal.com/beer. Cheers!