Rapids Players Joe Cannon and Pablo Mastroeni Named to 2006 MLS All-Star Team
NEW YORK (Monday July 17 2006) – D.C. United and MLS All-Star team Head Coach Peter Nowak today announced the 18-player roster for the 2006 Sierra Mist MLS All-Star Game which includes 2 players from the Colorado Rapids.
Rapids goalkeeper Joe Cannon and Rapids Team Captain and Midfielder Pablo Mastroeni were both added to the list of MLS plyaers who will take on England's Chelsea FC in the All-Star game in Bridgeview Illinois.
In addition to the eight players available to play from the All-Star First XI that was announced last week Nowak selected eight All-Stars and MLS Commissioner Don Garber made two selections.
The 2006 Sierra Mist MLS All-Star Game will feature the MLS All-Stars versus English Premier League champions Chelsea FC on Saturday Aug. 5 at TOYOTA PARK in Bridgeview Ill. The game will be televised live on ESPN at 4:30 p.m. MT.
The eight players selected by Nowak are: Joe Cannon (GK – Colorado Rapids) Bobby Boswell (DEF – D.C. United) Josh Gros (DEF – D.C. United) Ronnie O’Brien (MID – FC Dallas) Freddy Adu (MID – D.C. United) Pablo Mastroeni (MID – Colorado Rapids) Nate Jaqua (FOR – Chicago Fire) and Brian Ching (FOR – Houston Dynamo).
Nowak who was awarded five reserve selections chose three additional players to replace Ante Razov (FOR – Chivas USA) Shalrie Joseph (MID – New England Revolution) and Clint Dempsey (MID – New England Revolution) who were selected to the All-Star First XI but will not compete due to their regular season game on Aug. 6 that is part of a doubleheader with FC Barcelona and Chivas de Guadalajara.
Commissioner Garber selected Richard Mulrooney (MID – FC Dallas) and Alecko Eskandarian (FOR – D.C. United) as his two Commissioner’s picks. Mulrooney and Eskandarian have returned to form after suffering season-ending injuries in 2005.
D.C. United coach Peter Nowak earned the honor of coaching the MLS side by virtue of leading his team to the highest point total in the League through games played on July 4 (Week 14). This is his second appearance as a coach in the MLS All-Star game. He coached the Eastern Conference All-Stars to a 3-2 win over the Western Conference in 2004. Nowak faced Chelsea FC in July 2005 as D.C. United lost 2-1 at FedEx Field.
Complete MLS All-Star Roster:
GOALKEEPERS (2): Troy Perkins (D.C. United) Joe Cannon (Colorado Rapids)
DEFENDERS (5): Eddie Pope (Real Salt Lake) Jimmy Conrad (Kansas City Wizards) Chris Albright (Los Angeles Galaxy) Bobby Boswell (D.C. United) Josh Gros (D.C. United)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Landon Donovan (Los Angeles Galaxy) Christian Gomez (D.C. United) Dwayne De Rosario (Houston Dynamo) Freddy Adu (D.C. United) Pablo Mastroeni (Colorado Rapids) Ronnie O’Brien (FC Dallas) Richard Mulrooney (FC Dallas)
FORWARDS (4): Jaime Moreno (D.C. United) Brian Ching (Houston Dynamo) Nate Jaqua (Chicago Fire) Alecko Eskandarian (D.C. United)
Tickets for the midsummer showcase range from $55-$125 and can be purchased at the TOYOTA PARK Box Office located at 7000 S. Harlem Avenue from 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. CT Monday-Friday by calling TicketMaster at 312-559-1212 or visiting www.MLSnet.com.
2006 MLS ALL-STAR BIOS
JOE CANNON Goalkeeper Colorado Rapids Born: January 1 1975
In his eighth MLS season – his fourth with the Colorado Rapids – Cannon is a two-time MLS Goalkeeper of the Year and was named to the 2004 MLS Best XI. He has played in and started 12 games this season with a 5-4-2 record and a 1.35 Goals Against Average. This is Cannon’s fourth selection for the MLS All-Star team. He helped lead the Rapids to the Western Conference Championship in 2005 and the San Jose Earthquakes to the MLS Cup Championship in 2001 when he ranked second in the league with a 1.09 goals against average. Cannon has appeared in two games for the U.S. Men’s National Team registering 45 shutout minutes in each.
PABLO MASTROENI Midfielder Colorado Rapids Born: August 29 1976
In his ninth season in Major League Soccer Colorado Rapids Team Captain Mastroeni is considered one of the toughest and most steady midfielders in the league. He has played in 171 career regular season games starting 165. Mastroeni has established himself as a force both for the Rapids and on the international level as he had a breakout tournament at the 2002 World Cup and has been a mainstay on the U.S. Men’s National Team ever since. He appeared in two matches for the U.S. World Cup team at the 2006 FIFA World Cup. Mastroeni was named to the MLS Best XI in 2001 and this is his seventh selection to the MLS All-Star team.
BRIAN CHING Forward Houston Dynamo Born: May 24 1978
Ching ranks second in the League in scoring despite missing six games while representing the United States at the 2006 FIFA World Cup. Although he did not see action in Germany he has picked up where he left off for the Dynamo. Upon his return the imposing Hawaiian scored three goals in five games to help the Dynamo extend their undefeated streak to nine games. Ching currently leads the league with a 0.91 goals per game average. Ching’s MLS career began in 2001 with the Los Angeles Galaxy. He then played the entire 2002 season with the USL First Division’s Seattle Sounders before returning to MLS in 2003 with the San Jose Earthquakes. The 2004 MLS season was Ching’s breakout year as he scored 12 goals and was named to the RadioShack MLS Best XI.
NATE JAQUA Forward Chicago Fire Born: October 28 1981
In his fourth season in Major League Soccer Jaqua is one of the leaders of the Fire’s offense. He is tied for the team lead in goals (4) and has recorded one assist in 15 games played this season. Jaqua has steadily become an impact player for Chicago over the past three years. With consistent improvement in his game he earned himself a starting position and has begun to climb the charts of league leaders. Jaqua led the Fire in goals for most of 2005 before suffering a foot injury that kept him out of 13 contests. Despite last season’s injury Jaqua has returned to Chicago’s lineup and provided the Fire with consistent attacking force. In 2005 Jaqua was named Honda Player of the Month in June and Player of the Week honors for Week 10. Athletic prowess runs in Jaqua’s family as his father Jon is a former NFL player for the Washington Redskins. This is Jaqua’s second selection to a MLS All-Star Team.
JAIME MORENO Forward D.C. United Born: January 19 1974
The second leading goal scorer in MLS history (103) and a member of the MLS All-Time Best XI Moreno is considered to be one of the best players in League history. This is the seventh All-Star selection for the Bolivian-born Moreno. He has played for D.C. United all but one season during his 11-year career. He is also among the all-time leaders in games played (236) and games started (228). Moreno has reinvented himself following a potentially career-ending surgery on a pair of herniated disks in his back in 2004. He has notched 16 goals in a season three times and halfway through 2006 he has scored nine goals – second most in the League.
ALECKO ESKANDARIAN Forward D.C. United Born: July 9 1982
Eskandarian was selected to the roster by Commissioner Don Garber for his perseverance in returning from a severe concussion he suffered last season. Eskandarian’s knack for goal scoring and fiery attacking play has allowed him to establish himself as one of the most dangerous threats up top for D.C. United. Despite missing 20 games in 2005 due to a severe concussion Eskandarian has returned as a powerful force to United’s lineup having scored six goals this season which ranks in the top 10 in the League. The 2004 MLS Cup MVP Eskandarian is currently in his fourth season with D.C. United and is still considered one of the top attacking players in the league. From his original goal celebrations to his inspirational and emotional play Eskandarian is one of MLS’s top strikers. This is his second MLS All-Star selection.
DWAYNE DE ROSARIO Midfielder Houston Dynamo Born: May 15 1978
Considered one of the rising stars and most exciting players in the League De Rosario will be making his first appearance as an MLS All-Star. De Rosario a fixture on the Canadian National Team elevated his game in 2005 finishing as a runner-up for the Honda MLS MVP award and securing a spot on the Radio Shack Best XI squad. De Rosario leads the Houston Dynamo from the attacking midfield slot where his creative attacking skills superior field vision and incessant ability to apply pressure all over the field have allowed him to become one of the top midfielders in the league. De Rosario who has scored some spectacular goals during his career was awarded the MLS Goal of the Year award in 2004 and 2005.
LANDON DONOVAN Midfielder Los Angeles Galaxy Born: March 4 1982
Donovan a member of the MLS All-Time Best XI will be making his sixth consecutive All-Star appearance. This will be the 24-year-old’s second appearance as a member of the Los Angeles Galaxy after four previous trips as a member of the San Jose Earthquakes. Donovan returned from the 2006 World Cup and immediately sparked a Galaxy offense that sputtered through most of the first half of the season. After a 10-game winless streak Donovan led the Galaxy to three wins and notched three of his teams four goals during the stretch. In five previous All-Star game appearances Donovan has tallied five goals and four assists. He was named the Most Valuable Player of the 2001 MLS All-Star Game.
CHRISTIAN GOMEZ Midfielder D.C. United Born: November 7 1974
Gomez who is from Argentina is regarded as one of the most talented midfielders in the League in his third MLS season and only second full season. He’s a dynamic scoring threat and possesses incredible field vision. Gomez ranks in the top 10 in MLS in goals scored (7) and assists (6). He helped lead D.C. United to the 2004 MLS Cup Championship. This is Gomez’s second MLS All-Star selection.
FREDDY ADU Midfielder D.C. United Born: June 2 1989
In his third season in Major League Soccer Adu is quietly achieving his most consistent season as a pro. He is tied with Christian Gomez for the team lead in assists (6). He has played in 19 games and has started 17. He tallied his first goal of the season on in Kansas City on June 28 on a curling 20-yard shot that caught the underside of the crossbar. Adu who turned 17 in June has shown remarkable maturity for his age on the field. Adu has become a stronger physical presence and is quickly learning how to be an effective defensive player. Along with Gomez and Jaime Moreno Adu gives United a lethal counterattack. This is Adu’s second time as an MLS All-Star. He was a Commissioner’s pick in 2004.
RICHARD MULROONEY Midfielder FC Dallas Born: November 3 1976
Mulrooney was selected to the roster by Commissioner Don Garber for his perseverance in returning from a torn anterior cruciate ligament he suffered last season. Mulrooney is in his eighth season in Major League Soccer his second full season with FC Dallas. He spent his first six seasons with the San Jose Earthquakes. Mulrooney is a creative gritty and hard working midfielder who was challenging for a spot on the U.S. National Team before going down with the knee injury last season. He has played in 182 career Regular Season games starting 173 and has recorded six goals and an astounding 50 assists. This is Mulrooney’s third selection to a MLS All-Star team and first as a member of FC Dallas.
RONNIE O'BRIEN Midfielder FC Dallas Born: January 5 1979
A native of Ireland who is widely considered among the best flank players in MLS O’Brien regularly creates space for himself and his teammates with clever dribbling. This season he has one goal and four assists and leads the team in shots with 39 while helping the team claim first place in the Western Conference during the first half of the season. O’Brien was named to the Radio Shack MLS Best XI and the MLS All-Star Team in 2004 and 2005.
JIMMY CONRAD Defender Kansas City Wizards Born: February 12 1977
The seven-year MLS veteran was named MLS Defender of the Year in 2004 and 2005 and also earned Radio Shack Best XI honors in the same years. He anchored a defensive unit for Kansas City that recorded seven shutouts in 2005. A member of the U.S. National Team Conrad came in to lead a U.S. defense that held FIFA World Cup Champions Italy to a 1-1 draw in the first round of this year’s FIFA World Cup. This is Conrad’s third All-Star Game selection.
CHRIS ALBRIGHT Defender Los Angeles Galaxy Born: January 14 1979
Albright is in his eighth season in Major League Soccer where he has established himself as one of the league’s top defenders. Albright was named to the Radio Shack Best XI in 2005. He began his career as a forward before moving to the backline prior to the 2004 campaign and the move resulted in him earning a start in the Sierra Mist All-Star Game for the first time in his career in 2004. Since then the newly found defensive force has been a staple of the Galaxy’s back line earning him his third consecutive All-Star appearance. Albright was a member of the 2006 U.S. National Team that competed in Germany.
EDDIE POPE Defender Real Salt Lake Born: December 24 1973
The 32-year-old defensive stalwart is one of the most accomplished defenders in MLS and American soccer history. This is Pope’s 10th selection for the MLS All-Star team. Pope was a member of the U.S. World Cup teams in 1998 2002 and 2006. The High Point N.C. native was the 1997 MLS Defender of the Year a four-time recipient of MLS Best XI honors and a member of the MLS All-Time Best XI. Now a member of Real Salt Lake Pope began his career at D.C. United where he helped lead the team to three MLS Cup Championships. He played two years in New York for the MetroStars (2003-2004) before heading to Real Salt Lake in 2005.
BOBBY BOSWELL Defender D.C. United Born: March 15 1983
In his second season in MLS Boswell is making a name for himself as an up-and-coming young star. He has helped lead D.C. United to an impressive 13-1-5 record and the defense has allowed the fewest goals in MLS this season (16). Boswell was not drafted after finishing his college-career at Florida International University but went on to start 26 of 27 games played for D.C. United in his rookie season. He tallied three goals in 2005 including two game-winners and one assist. His first career MLS goal clinched a victory in the waning minutes of D.C. United's 4-3 triumph over the visiting Chicago Fire on June 15 2005. He also scored D.C. United’s lone goal against Chelsea last summer in a 2-1 loss. This is Boswell’s first selection to the MLS All-Star team.
JOSHUA GROS Defender D.C. United Born: June 25 1982
Now in his third season in Major League Soccer Josh Gros has played in 78 Regular Season games starting 69 for D.C. United. He scored four goals and tallied four assists in 2005 adding to the one goal and four assists he recorded in D.C. United’s championship season of 2004. Gros recorded the MLS Goal of the Week versus the Columbus Crew on May 7 2005. He played 2087 minutes during the 2004 Regular Season becoming the first United draft pick to log more than 2000 minutes since the club's inaugural season. Gros is a graduate of Rutgers University where as a senior he accumulated an impressive 16 goals and five assists. This is the first MLS All-Star selection for Gros.
TROY PERKINS Goalkeeper D.C. United Born: July 29 1981
In his third season with D.C. United Perkins has helped lead the team on an incredible run through the first half of the 2006 MLS Regular Season. He leads all MLS goalkeepers in wins (13) shutouts (7) and ranks second in goals against average (0.84). He made only two Regular Season appearances in 2005 after making 16 appearances in 2004 when D.C. United claimed the MLS Cup Championship. This is Perkins first MLS All-Star selection.