Bobby Boswell scored a goal versus Chelsea last year in DC United’s 2-1 loss to the EPL Title holders. Here he is pictured fighting Didier Drogba for possession. (International Sports Images)
MLS All Star Head Coach Peter Nowak named All Star subs and replacement players for New England’s Sharlie Joseph and Clint Dempsey and Chivas USA’s Ante Razov. Players from New England and Chivas USA will be unavailible for the match with Chelsea due to a match the next day between the two clubs. The All Star game versus Chelsea is August 5th in Chicago. Last year DC United coached by Nowak gave Cheslea’s regulars all they could handle in a 2-1 loss at RFK Stadium. Bobby Boswell, Jaime Moreno and Freddy Adu the three most impressive DC players in that match will be playing on August 5th. Adu was so impressive that Chelsea’s current interest in buying him from MLS can be traced directly to his impressive performance that day where he made both Shaun Wright Phillips and Lassana Diarra look like amatuers. Chelsea’s Joe Cole was very impressed by Adu and even said he’s love to be on the same team as Freddy some day!
The players named All Stars today: (All players from USA unless noted)
Joe Cannon (Colorado)
Freddy Adu (DC United)
Bobby Boswell (DC United)
Ronnie O’Brien (FC Dallas) (Ireland)
Josh Gros (DC United)
Brian Ching (Houston)
Pablo Mastroeni (Colorado)
Nate Jaqua (Chicago)
Alecko Eskandarian (DC United)
Richard Mulrooney (FC Dallas)
The First XI (From MLSNET.com)
GOALKEEPER Troy Perkins (D.C. United) — The second-year goalkeeper has played every minute thus far this season for the Black-and-Red, helping the four-time MLS Cup champions to the best overall record in the league at 12-1-5. The 24-year-old’s 0.78 goals against average is the lowest in MLS and he has already racked up seven shutouts so far in 2006.
DEFENDERS Jimmy Conrad (Kansas City Wizards) — The Wizards veteran has only played in seven games so far in 2006, thanks to his surprise selection to the U.S. World Cup team. However, his presence in the K.C. back line can’t be understated, as his ability to read the game, good positioning and a strong aerial game make him one of the most difficult defenders in the league to take on. He also has found the net once.
Chris Albright (Los Angeles Galaxy) — Similar to Conrad, Albright’s time with the Galaxy has been limited due to World Cup duty. The right back has 10 appearances this season. His return to the Galaxy lineup has helped spark a stunning turnaround for the defending MLS Cup champions, who have won three in a row after going winless in 10 straight.
Eddie Pope (Real Salt Lake) — The U.S. national team veteran completes the “First XI” trio of defenders just back from Germany. Injuries have also limited Pope’s time, as he has played in just eight RSL matches so far this season. He has done enough to earn a spot in his ninth consecutive All-Star Game though.
MIDFIELDERS Dwayne De Rosario (Houston Dynamo) (Canada) — The Canadian dynamo (pun intended) has picked up right where he left off in 2005, when he was a finalist for the Honda MVP after a stellar season for the San Jose Earthquakes. The unquestioned leader of the Dynamo midfield, De Rosario’s great passing and a penchant for scoring spectacular goals make him one of the most exciting players in the league to watch.
Landon Donovan (Los Angeles Galaxy) — Donovan’s impact on the Galaxy is obvious. Without him, the Galaxy struggle. With him, the Galaxy usually win. With four goals and four assists in 10 appearances, Donovan leads his team in each category (Herculez Gomez is tied with four goals). No stranger to the All-Star Game, Donovan has taken part every year since 2001, when he scored four goals to earn MVP honors.
Christian Gomez (D.C. United) (Argentina)– A native of Argentina, Gomez is the creator in D.C. United’s midfield. He passes well, shoots well and defends doggedly, helping his side to the top of the Eastern Conference. His six goals and six assists in 17 games have propelled him to a second consecutive All-Star appearance.
Clint Dempsey (New England Revolution) — Another U.S. World Cup team member, Dempsey is one of the most creative and innovative players ever produced by MLS. His brash attitude and fearlessness, combined with skills on the ball and deadly finishing ability, make the Texan a force to be reckoned with. He has only played in nine games thus far in 2006, but he has four goals and two assists in that time.
Shalrie Joseph (New England Revolution) (Grenada) — Dempsey’s partner in the Revs’ midfield, Joseph does much of the dirty work so that the others around him can strut their stuff. The Grenada international can do the job on his own, as well, as his three goals so far this season prove. But more than a scorer, his presence in New England’s midfield often helps the Revs control the tempo of a game.
FORWARDS Ante Razov (Chivas USA) — An MLS original, Razov has experienced a major resurgence in 2006, once again finding the net at will under head coach Bob Bradley. With 11 goals already this season, Razov is aiming to eclipse his career high of 18, set in 2000 as a member of the Chicago Fire. Despite having 95 career goals — third-most in MLS history — this will mark just the third time that Razov earns All-Star honors.
Jaime Moreno (D.C. United) (Bolivia) — Also an MLS original, Moreno has been getting the job done for United for years, and 2006 has been no different. His nine goals have put him over 100 for his career (currently at 103), trailing just Jason Kreis of RSL for the all-time lead. Moreno is a four-time MLS Cup winner, and with this year’s appointment, a six-time All-Star. The Bolivian is undoubtedly one of the top players ever to play in the league