Well I have to say I hoped that Bruce would be a bit creative and try to put together a roster that could challenge Manchester United, and perhaps be very entertaining on the pitch. Instead he plays a good deal of politics with his picks, which doesn't surprise me at all. Only 3 teams are left without a player on the roster:
- Seattle - They play a CONCACAF Champions League match on the same night as the All Star match, great scheduling by MLS. Clear the schedule for SuperLiga, but then do things like this, make one wonder.
- San Jose - No idea why Bobby Convey isn't on the squad, talk about a real shame. He is second in assists.
- KC Wizards - Not surprised here, not sure I would have picked anyone from their roster either.
Goalkeepers: Donovan Ricketts (LA Galaxy)*, Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake) &
Defenders: Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy)*, Chad Marshall (Columbus Crew) *, Jamison Olave (Real Salt Lake)*, Jonathan Bornstein (Chivas USA) &, Heath Pearce (FC Dallas) &, Wilman Conde (Chicago Fire) &, Kevin Alston (New England Revolution) &.
Midfielders: Dwayne De Rosario (Toronto FC) *, Marco Pappa (Chicago Fire)* Javier Morales (Real Salt Lake) *, Guillermo Barros Schelotto (Columbus Crew) *, Sebastian LeToux(Philadelphia Union) &, David Ferreira (FC Dallas) &, Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo) &, Shalrie Joseph (New England Revolution) &, Jeff Larentowicz (Colorado Rapids) &.
Forwards: Edson Buddle (LA Galaxy) *, Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy) *, Juan Pablo Angel (New York Red Bulls) &, Brian Ching (Houston Dynamo) +, Jaime Moreno (D.C. United) +
Unavailable: Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake)
* Denotes selection to First XI Team
+ Denotes a Commissioner's Selection
& Denotes Coach's Selection
My questions and the mini bios for the team after the jump:
Jaime Moreno, really Don? You are facing Manchester United and you pick a guy who doesn't even start for his team? So with this pick you are signalling to MLS fans that you not only don't take this match seriously, but that you clearly aren't paying any attention to the state of your league. Moreno has a single goal and has only 5 starts this year. I get that he is a MLS original but he is not a MLS All Star. I would get it if he were retiring and never had made a All Star team, but has made them before. You left a guy with 7 goals and one of the best new players in MLS home to bring Jaime Moreno to Houston, Wow.
Brian Ching, OK home town pick I get it. You had to do it, you always do it, and I will give you a pass on this one.
Kevin Alston, OK picking a defender from the worst defensive team in MLS is a mystery to me. The only team to allow more goals than New England is DC United.
Brad Davis, Bruce's home town pick. Brad is a quality player but this year he hasn't been a All Star level player, this is a safety pick based on his past. I will give Bruce this one as a home town pick, I don't believe a team hosting the All Star match has ever had fewer than 2 players on the roster, no matter how bad they are.
Sharlie Joseph, Another safety and reputation pick by Bruce, Sharlie is always a top player but this year New England is just plain bad and with Sharlie coming off personal issues earlier this year the pick is a bit of a stretch. The midfield is going to need some bite against United and Joseph might be able to supply that, quality d-mids are a rare thing this year in MLS. I would have went with LA's Chris Birchall, but with LA playing the night before in their away leg of their CCL qualifier, I get why he didn't go that route.
Jonathan Bornstein, Another pick based on the past, he has been awful for Chivas USA this year, and they have been an awful side.
Now before you think I am just being negative, lets talk about the choices I really like that Bruce made:
Sebastien Le Toux, Size, pace, skill and he should be able to match up well against the Man U midfield. A great pick and it should keep the Union fans happy.
David Ferreira, Well it appears that having an announce team pimp you for the All Star team for weeks on end works. Listen he is a hot player, but half his goals come from the PK spot, so this is a stretch but maybe it will bring some fans from Dallas down to Houston.
Jeff Larentowicz, I believe Jeff is one of the toughest guys to play against and give him a good deal of credit for making the Rapids a better team this year. He should do well for the MLS at breaking up plays.
Nick Rimando, Well leaving him off would have been a real shame, he has been impressive the last 3 months and deserved the spot.
I can also say that I love the picks that were named to the First XI, those really were the best of the best.
Now what about players who got left off?
My one clear player getting left off is Alvaro Saborio, 7 goals and 4 assists. Bobby Convey, he is an assist machine and would have given MLS a player will will grind it out in the midfield both on offense and defense. What about Oswaldo Alanso, I know he has a CCL match that night, but wow is Seattle a different team with him on the roster.
So who do you think got left off?
I think this is a very bland team, with the inability to get more players from LA, who have a CCL match the night before, or Seattle has one the night of, and TFC also has a match the night before the All Star Match. Knowing that most of the LA players will likely see limited action. I really worry about picking Ching and Moreno, it will put a lot of pressure on the midfield.
2010 AT&T MLS All-Star Game Roster:
Players are listed in alphabetical order by position.
Donovan Ricketts Goalkeeper LA Galaxy Nationality: Jamaica Born: July 7, 1977
This season, Ricketts has helped the Galaxy to a record of 12-2-3 just past the midpoint of the regular season. He also currently leads the League with a 0.5 goals against average and nine shutouts. In his first MLS season, goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts was a key component of the Los Angeles Galaxy's defense that allowed just 31 goals on the way to the 2009 MLS Cup Final. Beginning his professional career in Jamaica with Village United before moving to EPL team Bolton Wanderers and League Two side Bradford City, Ricketts made an immediate impact in his MLS debut vs. Chivas USA on April 11, 2009, keeping a clean sheet with five saves and earning MLS Player of the Week honors. This is Ricketts' first MLS All-Star Team selection.
Nick Rimando Goalkeeper Real Salt Lake Nationality: USA Born: June 17, 1979
Rimando recently posted the third-longest shutout streak in MLS history - 566 minutes. His heroics in stopping penalty kicks helped lift Real Salt Lake to their first MLS Cup in 2009. Rimando is in his 11th MLS season, having also played with Miami Fusion and D.C. United. This is Rimando's second MLS All-Star appearance.
Kevin Alston Defender New England Revolution Nationality: USA Born: May 5, 1988
Alston has been a regular starter and a consistent performer for the Revolution in his two seasons in MLS, after being selected in the first round of the 2009 SuperDraft out of Indiana University. A U.S. youth international, he has developed into an attacking right back for New England. This is Alston's first MLS All-Star appearance.
Jonathan Bornstein Defender Chivas USA Nationality: USA Born: November 7, 1984
Bornstein was a member of the U.S. team in the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. He has started all 10 of his League appearances this season and has one assist. The 2006 MLS Rookie of the Year, he is an effervescent attacker on the left side for Chivas USA, both as a defender and midfielder. The southern California native was the first Chivas USA player ever to play in the All-Star Game. This is Bornstein's third MLS All-Star appearance.
Wilman Conde Defender Chicago Fire Nationality: Colombia Born: August 29, 1982
The 6-foot-2 Conde is an imposing force who possesses a lethal combination of strength and skill. Signed in August 2007 from Millonarios in Colombia, Conde has represented his country at every youth international level. He was a member of the MLS Best XI in 2009, when he also made his first All-Star appearance. This is Conde's second MLS All-Star appearance.
Omar Gonzalez Defender LA Galaxy Nationality: USA Born: Oct. 11, 1988
The 2009 MLS Rookie of the Year has become a steady starter in a solid Galaxy backline. Since his arrival after being selected third overall in the 2009 SuperDraft, he started and played every minute of every League and MLS Cup game for the Galaxy until missing the July 3 game vs. New England. With Gonzalez in defense, the Galaxy have only allowed seven goals in 2010, shutting out opponents 10 times. A three-year starter at the University of Maryland, Gonzalez started all 69 of the games in which he appeared for the Terrapins, and as a junior was a pivotal member of their NCAA championship in 2008. Gonzalez was a member of the prestigious U.S. Soccer Residency program in Bradenton, Fla. Gonzalez has
Chad Marshall Defender Columbus Crew Nationality: USA Born: August 22, 1984
This season, Marshall has helped lead the Crew to an 8-2-4 record, which currently places his side in the top spot in the Eastern Conference. The second overall selection in the 2004 MLS SuperDraft has spent his entire seven-year professional career with the Columbus Crew. After battling injuries early in his career, Marshall has stormed back to become one of the League's top defenders. He has been named the MLS Defender of the Year each of the last two seasons and named to the MLS Best XI on each occasion. The 25-year-old Riverside, Calif., native has used his young career to catapult him into the U.S. Men's National Team scene. He has recorded 11 caps for the U.S. and was named to the 30-man preliminary roster for the 2010 World Cup. This is Marshall's second MLS All-Star team selection.
Jamison Olave Defender Real Salt Lake Nationality: Colombia Born: April 21, 1981
This year, Olave has started all 15 matches and played the full 90 minutes in all but one match for RSL. He is an intimidating and effective physical presence and has proven to be a threat on set pieces as he has contributed three key goals for Salt Lake this season. Jamison Olave was named Real Salt Lake's Defender of the Year in 2009, starting 24 of 25 appearances to lead his team to the 2009 MLS Cup championship. Beginning his professional career in 2001 with Colombian first division squad Deportivo Cali, Olave helped the team earn its eighth domestic championship in 2005 before leaving the club in 2007 to join Real Salt Lake. In 2008, Olave started 23 of RSL's last 26 matches, scoring twice in the process, including the first-ever goal at Rio Tinto Stadium on Oct. 9 vs. the New York Red Bulls. This is Olave's first MLS All-Star Team selection
Heath Pearce Defender FC Dallas Nationality: USA Born: August 13, 1984
Pearce helps initiate the FC Dallas attack, notching five assists in 14 appearances this season, while locking down the right side defensively. came to MLS last season after splitting four years with FC Nordsjaelland (Denmark) and Hansa Rostock (Germany). Comfortable on either flank and in midfield or at the back, he has been a regular with the U.S. national team and was part of the pre-World Cup camp. This is Pearce's first MLS All-Star appearance.
Kyle Beckerman Midfielder Real Salt Lake Nationality: USA Born: April 23, 1982
*Will not be a member of the 23-man game day roster due to injury
Now in his 11th MLS season, Beckerman has started nine games this season, notching two goals and two assists from his center midfield position, where he marshals RSL's possession game and disrupts the opponent's attack. Beckerman signed with MLS at the age of 18 with the Miami Fusion as part of the then-Project-40 program. After spending five full seasons with the Colorado Rapids, the Crofton, Md., native was traded to Real Salt Lake in July 2007. The next season, he helped the team to the 2008 Western Conference Championship and in 2009, Beckerman captained his squad to its first MLS Cup title. This is Beckerman's fourth consecutive All-Star selection.
Brad Davis Midfielder Houston Dynamo Nationality: USA Born: November 8, 1981
Possessing a cultured left foot, Davis is one of the best dead ball strikers in MLS and has three goals, six assists in 15 games this season. The third overall pick out of Saint Louis University in the 2003 SuperDraft, he began his career with the MetroStars before going to Dallas for two seasons. Davis then went to San Jose in 2005, moving with the club when they transferred to Houston for the 2006 season. This is Davis' third MLS All-Star appearance.
Dwayne De Rosario Midfielder Toronto FC Nationality: Canada Born: May 15, 1978
This season, De Rosario leads Toronto's attack with eight goals and three assists in 15 games. In 2009, his first full season in Toronto, De Rosario was voted the team's MVP and Golden Boot winner. Currently in his 10th MLS season, De Rosario has won the MLS Cup four times and is the only two-time MLS Cup MVP. The Scarborough, Ontario native has been named to the MLS Best XI squad four times. De Rosario has recorded two game-winning goals in previous All-Star games, including a long-range volley in a 1-0 victory against Chelsea in 2006 and a penalty kick that was the difference in the MLS All-Stars' 3-2 win against West Ham in 2008 in Toronto. He earned his first of 52 caps with the Canadian national team in 1998. This is De Rosario's fifth MLS All-Star team selection.
David Ferreira Midfielder FC Dallas Nationality: Colombia Born: August 9, 1979
In his second season with FC Dallas, Ferreira has become the centerpiece of the team's attack, with four goals and four assists in 15 games. He was signed on loan from Atletico Paranaense in Brazil, where he played five seasons. He also played for América de Cali in his native Colombia, and won a title with Al-Shabab in the United Arab Emirates. This is Ferreira's first MLS All-Star appearance.
Shalrie Joseph Midfielder New England Revolution Nationality: Granada Born: May 24, 1978
Currently in his eighth season with New England, Joseph controls the game from his defensive midfield position and considered the hub of the Revolution system. He has three assists in seven games this season. Born in Grenada, Joseph moved to Brooklyn, N.Y. as a teenager and has represented his national team on numerous occasions. He was named Caribbean Footballer of the Year in 2007. This is Joseph's fifth MLS All-Star appearance.
Jeff Larentowicz Midfielder Colorado Rapids Nationality: USA Born: August 5, 1983
A disruptive force on opponents' attack and a settling presence for his club, Larentowicz is in his first season with Colorado after four years in New England. He has started all 15 Rapids games and scored one goal. A fourth-round selection in the 2005 Supplemental Draft, Larentowicz looked like a longshot to stick, but has developed into one of the most reliable holding midfielders in MLS. This is Larentowicz's first MLS All-Star appearance.
Sebastien Le Toux Midfielder Philadelphia Union Nationality: France Born: January 10, 1984
Le Toux leads the expansion Philadelphia Union with seven goals and seven assists in 12 games. Selected in this year's expansion draft, Le Toux was the first player signed by the expansion Seattle Sounders FC, after playing with the USL Sounders for two years. He also played for FC Lorient in his home country, France. This is Le Toux's first MLS All-Star appearance.
Javier Morales Midfielder Real Salt Lake Nationality: Argentina Born: Jan. 10, 1980
The centerpiece of the RSL attack, Morales is a seasoned playmaker in his fourth MLS season. In 2010, Morales has four goals and six assists in 14 games, helping Real Salt Lake to a 9-4-3 record. In 2009, Morales featured in 26 matches and recorded five assists as RSL won their first MLS Cup Championship. During the 2008 season, he was second in MLS with 15 assists in 29 matches, behind only MLS MVP Guillermo Barros Schelotto. He spent nine years in his native Argentina with Lanus, Arsenal de Sarandi, Newell's Old Boys and Cordoba before moving to Spain in 2006, where he played with Vecindario. He was signed by Real in August 2007. This is Morales' second MLS All-Star team selection. Morales was named as a Commissioner's Pick to the 2009 MLS All-Star game.
Marco Pappa Midfielder Chicago Fire Nationality: Guatemala Born: Nov. 15, 1987
In his third season with the Fire, Pappa has featured in all 14 games this season, leading the Fire with six goals while also contributing four assists. The Guatemalan midfielder, who joined the Fire on loan in 2008, has since made the move permanent. In 2009, Pappa started 28 of his 30 appearances for the Fire as they reached the Eastern Conference Championship. He began his professional career in 2006 with CSD Municipal in his homeland. Pappa has represented his country at the U-17, U-20, U-21, and U-23 levels. He made his first appearance with the full squad on Aug. 20, 2008, and has since earned 12 caps. This is Pappa's first MLS All-Star team selection.
Guillermo Barros Schelotto Midfielder Columbus Crew Nationality: Argentina Born: May 4, 1973
In his fourth MLS season, the Argentine attacker is the fulcrum of the Crew's offense. Schelotto, the 2008 Volkswagen MLS Most Valuable Player, and former star at Argentine club Boca Juniors, signed as the Crew's first Designated Player in 2007 season and led the League with 19 assists the following year. He earned League MVP and MLS Cup MVP honors as he assisted on all three Crew tallies in their 3-1 victory over the New York Red Bulls. In 2009, Schelotto scored 12 goals, while adding three assists. This is Schelotto's second selection to the MLS All-Star First XI team.
Juan Pablo Angel Forward New York Red Bulls Nationality: Colombia Born: October 24, 1975
The 34-year-old Colombian international has been one of the League's most exciting and productive players since signing as a Designated Player from Aston Villa of the English Premiership in 2007. Armed with a world-class goal-scoring instinct, he is a brilliant finisher and an excellent reader of the game. Since arriving in MLS, Angel has scored 54 goals, including a team-high nine in 16 games this year. This is Angel's third MLS All-Star game appearance; he was the game's MVP in 2007.
Edson Buddle Forward LA Galaxy Nationality: USA Born: May 21, 1981
In the midst of a brilliant 2010 campaign, Buddle has been named to his second All-Star team. Buddle currently leads the Budweiser Golden Boot race with 11 goals in 12 games. In 2009, Buddle finished second on the Galaxy in scoring despite an injury-plagued season. Buddle played his first full season with the Galaxy in 2008, when he tallied a then career-high 15 goals, good for third in the League. Buddle began his MLS career with the Columbus Crew, where he scored 39 goals in four seasons. He played one season with the New York Red Bulls, before moving to Toronto FC in 2007, then acquired by the Galaxy that June. He most recently appeared for the U.S. Men's National Team in the 2010 FIFA World Cup. This is Buddle's second selection as an All-Star, and his first time named to the MLS All-Star First XI.
Brian Ching Forward Houston Dynamo Nationality: USA Born: May 24, 1978
The Dynamo's exemplary talisman has three goals and an assist in nine games this season. A three-time MLS Cup winner and MVP of MLS Cup 2006, Ching was a part of the U.S. national team pre-World Cup camp. The "Hawaiian Superman" led MLS with 12 goals in 2004 and was named to the MLS Best XI. After making his debut in 2001 with Los Angeles, he spent a year in the USL before signing with San Jose in 2003. This is Ching's fourth MLS All-Star appearance.
Landon Donovan Forward LA Galaxy Nationality: USA Born: March 4, 1982
This season, Donovan has led both club and country to success as he recorded a League-leading 10 assists along with two goals to lift the Galaxy to a League-best record of 12-2-3. As a member of the U.S. Men's National Team, Donovan scored three goals through the USA's run to the Round of 16 in the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. The 2009 Volkswagen MLS MVP and 2008 Golden Boot Winner, Donovan has earned his 10th consecutive All-Star selection. Donovan was named the MVP of the 2001 All-Star Game, his first season in the League, and helped lead the San Jose Earthquakes to their first MLS Cup title that same year. He again played a starring role in the Earthquakes' second MLS Cup in 2003, and as well as with the Galaxy in their MLS Cup championship season of 2005. Last year, Donovan led the Galaxy to the MLS Cup Final, scoring three goals during postseason play to earn the distinction of all-time leading goal scorer in MLS postseason history. In 2009, Donovan helped lead the United States to their most successful finish in a major FIFA tournament when they defeated Spain and finished second to Brazil at the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup. With five goals scored, Donovan is tied with Brian McBride for the most goals scored in MLS All-Star Game history.
Jaime Moreno Forward D.C. United Nationality: Bolivia Born: January 19, 1974
Moreno is one of just two players to have played a game in each of the League's first 15 seasons (New England's Steve Ralston is the other). Moreno is the League's all-time leading goal scorer, with 132 goals in 334 appearances. He has won four MLS Cup titles with D.C. United. In the All-Star Game, Moreno will play for Bruce Arena for the first time since December, 1998 when they helped United lift the InterAmerican Cup by defeating Brazil's Vasco da Gama. Moreno was a member of Bolivia's team in the 1994 World Cup. This is Moreno's seventh MLS All-Star game appearance.