Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySoccer World DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
MLS Awards: Ricketts is best of a good bunch of keepers
by Ridge Mahoney, October 29th, 2013 8:26PM

MOST READ
TAGS:  mls, portland timbers

MOST COMMENTED

By Ridge Mahoney

The Galaxy has a way of going through goalkeepers quickly, yet still Donovan Ricketts had to wonder where his career was going when he was traded to Montreal in November 2011, after helping L.A. win the league title.

He had to wonder again the following August when the Impact sent him to Portland in exchange for another keeper, Troy Perkins. But his excellent play this season is a major reason the Timbers topped the Western Conference and led the league with 15 shutouts (14 with Ricketts in the nets).

“He’s been tremendous all year and for me he doesn’t get enough credit,” says his coach, Caleb Porter. “I think he’s one of the top goalkeepers in the league. I wouldn’t trade him for anybody.”

Ricketts ranked third in goals-allowed average with a mark of 0.97 in his 32 games played, trailing only Matt Reis and last year’s Goalkeeper of the Year, Jimmy Nielsen. Reis isn’t eligible for the award because he played in only 12 games, and while Nielsen was strong again, Ricketts’ 92 saves were exceeded by only four counterparts.

The Timbers needed that backing to bail out a back line that lurched through some rough patches but finished the season with six shutouts in their last eight games.

Nielsen’s average of 0.88 and 13 shutouts depicts his prowess yet thanks to SKC’s stout back line he needed to make just 68 saves. RSL’s seemingly elastic Nick Rimando, 34, turned in several spectacular performances while retaining his spot in the U.S. national team pool. Unheralded yet valuable in the Supporters’ Shield-winning season was Luis Robles; only two keepers exceeded his total of 103 saves. Clint Irwin jumped from Charlotte of third-level USL PRO to MLS in a single bound, making the team after a preseason trial and then taking over the starting job to make 91 saves and post 10 shutouts to finish fifth in GAA at 1.10.

Balloting for Goalkeeper of the Year and all other major MLS awards closes Friday. Finalists will be announced Nov. 21.

Here are the top five in the chase for Allstate MLS Goalkeeper of the Year:

1. Donovan Ricketts (Portland).
2. Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake).
3. Jimmy Nielsen (Sporting Kansas City).
4. Luis Robles (New York Red Bulls).
5. Clint Irwin (Colorado).

Who's your pick for MLS Goalkeeper of the Year? Begin the debate on Twitter or Facebook.


1 comment
  1. Zoe Willet
    commented on: October 30, 2013 at 6:12 p.m.
    What about Sean Johnson? How could anyone leave him out? Fantastic goalie, also selected for the national team!


Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Confidential
The Omar Factor    
Galaxy defender Omar Gonzalez got his first start since the World Cup in a 2-0 defeat ...
Forward thinking jumbles USA puzzle    
Goals by Jordan Morris and Juan Agudelo illustrate the range of choices and decisions being faced ...
Experience counts for a lot, but youth will decide Women's World Cup    
Change comes slowly in women's soccer. Jill Ellis was no Jurgen Klinsmann in picking her 23-player ...
Agudelo's journey takes him back to the national team    
The youngest player ever to score for the USA is hoping the friendly against Mexico Wednesday ...
MLS gets its wish, and it's ugly -- parity    
So, let's have a show of hands. Who says their favorite MLS team is playing well? ...
Projecting Klinsmann's USA roster for Mexico game    
The next friendly for the USA is against its bitterest rival and with a roster announcement ...
Philadelphia's troubles extend far beyond who's in goal    
A sputtering attack and susceptibility on set plays have dragged the Union into last place.
Making a Strong case for soccer    
As lead soccer announcer for Fox Sports, John Strong has quickly moved onto the national stage ...
Jeff Plush on the NWSL: women's league plays long ball    
It might not sound like much but the National Women's Soccer League, which begins its third ...
Whitecaps get their hands dirty    
The LA Galaxy will sometimes have bad games -- and it has had its share at ...
>> Soccer America Confidential Archives