There are a lot of options for this choice, but I think if anyone watching Atlanta had the option to choose, they would choose Michael Parkhurst. The captain is not the most physical and is not the youngest or the fastest. However, he’s having a fantastic season and is aging in reverse if anything.
Parkhurst is easily the smartest player on the pitch, no matter who Atlanta is facing. He makes up for his lack of youth in clever defending. His positioning is always stellar and he is always making a good play on a defender. Parkhurst most recently made his sixth MLS All Star appearance. Although he hasn’t won any major league awards since winning Defender of the year and being named to the Best XI in 2007, he is still one of the best in the league.
Unfortunately Parkhurst picked up an ankle injury against Montreal just before the All Star Game. That led to fewer minutes in the All Star Game, but hopefully with more rest Parkhurst will be ready to go for the home stretch of the season.