The 2008 MLS All-Star game is just two weeks away. The MLS' starting XI was announced earlier today. This is the squad that will be facing West Ham United of the EPL.
Matt Reis, GK, New England Revolution
Not too much of a surprise here. New England is the best team in the league and has three players in the starting lineup. Reis has five shutouts and a good 1.12 GAA.
Michael Parkhurst, D, New England Revolution
Probably one of the best young American defenders in the game today. He's been very strong at the back for the Revs.
Jimmy Conrad, D, Kansas City Wizards
Three goals from defense this year, he's been the lone bright spot in a poor season for the Wizards.
Frankie Hejduk, D, Columbus Crew
Quite possibly one of the best-conditioned athletes in the world. Hejduk never seems to tire, and has been a key part of the Columbus attack this year, registering two assists and creating plenty of other opportunities with his runs.
Shalrie Joseph, M, New England Revolution
Joseph has long been one of the best midfielders in MLS. He can score and he can create opportunities for others.
Cuauhtemoc Blanco, M, Chicago Fire
Agree with his penchant for diving or not, you can't deny that Blanco has had a huge influence on Chicago's fortunes. Four goals, six assists, and a stunning 40 fouls suffered this season. That's a lot of scoring opportunities created by just one man.
Sacha Kljestan, M, Chivas USA
Kljestan has scored five goals and added three assists, good for top scoring honors on the Chivas roster. He's only 22 years old, and should be a fixture on the All-Star team for years to come.
Robbie Rogers, M, Columbus Crew
Rogers has scored five goals while taking 46 shots and suffering 36 fouls. The only knock against him is that he hasn't been a great ball distributor, with zero assists on the season so far.
David Beckham, M, LA Galaxy
Becks is a lot like Yao Ming. Even if he doesn't put up great numbers, fans are going to want to put him in the All-Star game because he's a huge star. No controversy here though, as he has five goals and six assists on the season.
Without both Beckham and the next selection, LA would be in dire straits indeed.
Landon Donovan, F, LA Galaxy
Eleven goals and seven assists speak for themselves. Donovan is an exciting playmaker, and one of the big names that MLS relies on to succeed. Donovan is currently the leading goals corer in the league, and is tied for second in assists.
Kenny Cooper, F, FC Dallas
Cooper is averaging a goal every two games, with eight goals in 16 matches. It's surprising that his strike rate isn't even higher, as he leads the league with 58 shots taken. Currently, he's provided almost half of Dallas' offense (FC Dallas has scored a total of 19 goals).
Those are the 11 players selected by the fans, players, media and coaches that will start the match against West Ham. The remainder of the roster, to be selected by head coach Steve Nichol, will be announced on Tuesday.
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