As the 2018 Major League Soccer season comes to a close, Atlanta United’s dominance on the field is more than recognized in the 2018 award nomination table.
At the and of every Major League Soccer season, there is a list of awards to go around the league, for coaches, players and even officials. This 2018 campaign is no exception. And this year, the ballot is filled with the Five Stripes.
The 2018 awards include nine separate nominations from Atlanta United, including head coach Tata Martino and golden-boot leader Josef Martinez.
Perhaps the most recognized of any award is the Landon Donovan MVP award, given to the most valuable player in Major League Soccer. The Five Stripes send two players to the polls for the prestigious award, with Miguel Almiron and Josef Martinez possibly becoming the franchises first-ever MVPs.
More from MLS Multiplex
- Javier Milei Elected in Argentina: Potential Impacts on MLS and Signings of Argentine Players
- Orlando City and New York City FC in the Battle for Matías Arezo; Grêmio Enters Negotiations! Who Will Come Out on Top?
- USA, Honduras, Panama, and Canada Close in on a Spot in the 2024 Copa America
- De Gea Turns Down Al-Nassr’s Lucrative Offer: Speculation Points to Possible Reunion with Messi at Inter Miami
- Messi’s Magnetic Impact in the United States
At initial glance, it may seem difficult to give the MVP to anyone other than Martinez with his record-breaking season. But with players such as Zlatan Ibrahimovic giving their clubs a much-needed boost, the award may not be as straightforward for the Venezuelan striker.
Along with the two South Americans, the Five Stripes send center-back combination Michael Parkhurst and Leandro Gonzalez Pirez in contention for the honor of Defender of the Year. Accompanying his defenders is goalkeeper Brad Guzan, trying to take the 2018 Allstate Goalkeeper of the Year award. The defensive trio has proved to be one of the best in MLS, only allowing 1.16 goals per match.
Guzan is also in nomination for the 2018 MLS Works Humanitarian of Year award in recognition for his work off the pitch in the Atlanta community.
After a historic 2017 season that saw Almiron take home the 2017 MLS Newcomer of the Year award, the Five Stripes once again bring two players to the table in contention for the award. This year, the Atlanta United nominees include teenage sensation Ezequiel Barco and defensive workhorse Eric Remedi.
Although the players of the Five Stripes are earning their way into the spotlight this MLS season, the manager in the dugout is getting his chance of taking home the 2018 Coach of the Year award.
Tata Martino joins 16 other managers in nomination for the award and, amidst numerous rumors of a potential departure from down South, what he has brought to the table for the Five Stripes has made him a more than deserving candidate for the prestigious award.
What the wide-range of nominations illustrates is that this has truly been a historic season for Atlanta United. They have a chance to win the Supporters’ Shield, break Toronto FC’s points record, and make a deep run in the postseason, all in the second season of the club’s existence. What a year it’s been.