ProSoccerTalk’s Best XI from Week 19 in Major League Soccer includes a guy you may have heard of. They sometimes call him “Becks.”
- Sporting Kansas City’s Jimmy Nielsen
Rationale, motive and intent: Blessed with a good defense and a team structure that keeps the ball in the other fellow’s end, your presumptive All-Star starter hasn’t needed to be sensational and overly involved too often in 2012. Saturday at Columbus was the exception as the White Puma (high-five on the nickname, dude) led the way in a 2-0 win.
- Seattle’s Adam Johansson
- Philadelphia’s Carlos Valdes
- Chicago’s Austin Berry (pictured, right)
- Houston’s Jermaine Taylor
Rationale, motive and intent: Johansson had two assists in the Sounders’ draw inside Red Bull Arena. When outside backs get two assists, they’ll have to
ask beg not to be included on my team. Valdes was solid on defense and was later “Carlos on the Spot” to poke home the Union’s last-second game-winner. Berry is having an unbelievable rookie season, and Taylor keeps looking like a man who can siphon a lot of the pain out of Geoff Cameron’s departure from the Dynamo back line.
- FC Dallas’ Fabian Castillo
- Toronto FC’s Terry Dunfield
- L.A. Galaxy’s David Beckham
- Houston’s Geoff Cameron
- Chicago’s Pavel Pardo
Rationale, motive and intent: Castillo’s goal and assist were huge as Dallas won for the first time in 14 matches. I covered Dunfield’s week full of awesome here. And I wrote about Beckham’s big bag of awesome here. Cameron’s passing and presence, as he returned from a two-game injury absence, helped overwhelm 10-man D.C. United. Pardo did the midfield work (especially when the Fire went a man down) and turned a wonderful free kick into the game-winner.
- San Jose’s Chris Wondolowski
Rationale, motive and intent: Wonder Wondo has a league-leading 17 goals after his hat trick Saturday against Real Salt Lake. Only complaint: he’s taking a lot of the drama out of the Golden Boot race, running with the doggone thing just halfway through the season.