WASHINGTON, November 26, 2012 — Major League Soccer’s Best XI was named on Monday by MLS Commissioner Don Garber during his annual State of the League teleconference call. D.C. United’s Chris Pontius was named as one of the four midfielders to the team.
After suffering season-ending injuries in 2010 and 2011, this season, Pontius set career highs in goals (12), games played (31), games started (26), minutes (2,339), shots (71) and shots on goal (29). Six of his goals were game-winners.
The Best XI recognizes the MLS’s top 11 players at each position on the field for the 2012 season. The team is decided by votes from MLS players, MLS club management, and media and is based on regular-season performance.
2012 MLS Best XI:
Goalkeeper – Jimmy Nielsen (Sporting Kansas City)
Defender – Victor Bernardez (San Jose Earthquakes)
Defender – Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City)
Defender – Aurelien Collin (Sporting Kansas City)
Midfielder – Osvaldo Alonso (Seattle Sounders FC)
Midfielder – Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy)
Midfielder – Chris Pontius (D.C. United)
Midfielder – Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
Forward – Thierry Henry (New York Red Bulls)
Forward – Robbie Keane (LA Galaxy)
Forward – Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)
Sporting Kansas City, which led the Eastern Conference had four players named to the team.
Three players have previously been named to the MLS Best XI: Donovan, Henry and Wondolowski. Eight players are first-time Best XI: Alonso, Bernardez, Besler, Collin, Keane, Nielsen, Pontius and Zusi.
Donovan has been named to his fifth consecutive Best XI selection and sixth overall, tying Dwayne De Rosario for the most of any player in MLS history.
John Haydon wrote a weekly soccer column for The Washington Times. He has covered two World Cups and written about Major League Soccer from the league’s inception in 1996. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnahaydon
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