Marcelo Balboa named to U.S. Soccer's All-Time Men's National Team Best XI
U.S. Soccer on Friday unveiled its All-Time Men's National Team Best XI to wrap up the Federation's celebration of its Centennial anniversary, with Colorado Rapids legend Marcelo Balboa named among the USMNT's all-time best defenders.
Landon Donovan led the way for the MNT Best XI with 52 votes. He and Clint Dempsey represent the two players currently active with the National Team through 2013.
The MNT Best XI also features five members of the National Soccer Hall of Fame: defenders Balboa (2005) and Eddie Pope (2011), midfielders Tab Ramos (2005) and Claudio Reyna (2012) and forward Eric Wynalda (2004).
- Balboa inducted into National Soccer Hall of Fame
- Balboa selected to Colorado Sports Hall of Fame
- WATCH: Balboa talks about his World Cup experiences
- Balboa in Rapids Gallery of Honor
- How one of the Nation's greatest defenders modernized the position
Three-time FIFA World Cup goalkeeper Brad Friedel received 25 votes from the panel (44 percent of the vote).
Calculated by total votes, U.S. Soccer's All-Time Men's Best XI is arranged in a 4-4-2 formation and listed below in alphabetical order by position:
Goalkeeper - Brad Friedel 1992-2004 (25 votes)
Defender - Marcelo Balboa 1988-2000 (35 votes)
Defender - Carlos Bocanegra 2001-2012 (25 votes)
Defender - Steve Cherundolo 1999-2012 (25 votes)
Defender - Eddie Pope 1996-2006 (33 votes)
Midfielder - Clint Dempsey 2004-present (25 votes)
Midfielder - Landon Donovan 2000-present (52 votes)
Midfielder - Tab Ramos 1988-2000 (42 votes)
Midfielder - Claudio Reyna 1994-2006 (45 votes)
Forward - Brian McBride 1993-2006 (45 votes)
Forward - Eric Wynalda 1990-2000 (43 votes)
Complete voting results are listed below.
In an effort to create a fair and reasonable process to determine the All-Time Best XI, U.S. Soccer appointed a committee of soccer historians and former players, coaches, media members and administrators at the National Team level.
The committee determined the list of eligible players for selection to the Best XI, as well as the criteria to be considered by the list of voters. Voters for the MNT Best XI included 57 former players and administrators, as well as media members. The criteria the voters considered in determining their All-Time Best XI:
- Starter or key contributor to overall success on the field, especially in World Cups
- Longevity, overall performance and talent on the field with the U.S. Men's or Women's National Team
- Impact on the legacy of the U.S. Men's or Women's National Team program