As another legendary season comes to a close this Sunday in MLS, award season is getting underway. On Wednesday, Galaxy frontman Robbie Keane was awarded MLS MVP. U.S. Soccer has named its Male Athlete of the Year, while Female Athlete voting is in progress. Teams are handing out individual P.O.Y. awards as well as defender of the year. But do you recall? The two most B.A. awards of all? Any other day, I’d have a Rudolf parody song that goes here but I’m a little under the weather and not feeling to creative, sorry to let you all down.
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Anyhow, the annual MLS Goal and Save of the Year were announced on Thursday. The prestigious awards have fallen to Seattle Sounders striker Obafemi Martins, and New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles. Both of these awards were voted on by the fans. Bet you can’t guess who won which award.
Let’s start with the Goal of the Year.
You’d be pretty hard pressed to find a better goal than this, hell even Jon Busch was impressed with it. Martins slotted in an impossible chip from an even more impossible angle. He collects a Marco Pappa pass, which was a pretty impressive pass in of itself, before sending the ball arcing over Busch and into the far post. Wow. Just, wow. Next up is Luis Robles’s double-save.
At first glance, this may not seem that impressive. Both shots were within a comfortable arms’s reach, especially that second one. But after taking a closer glance, one sees that Robles was caught leaning the wrong way on the original shot and had to adjust while the ball was mid-flight.
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This is not necessarily his fault, the ball took a deflection. Anyone would have leaned as he did. So he makes the initial save, bounces back up, and then realizes how extremely fortunate that the position he got back up in was the exact position that Clint Dempsey was honing in on for the easy put back header. Robles swats the second ball away easily, denying two almost guaranteed goal scoring opportunities.
This save was incredibly refreshing, as many including myself have become disgruntled with how pedestrian some of MLS’s Saves of the Week can be. Too many of them seem like saves that any merely serviceable ‘keeper should be able to make. Most, not all. Many are truly awesome to watch. The goals tend to be much more thrilling, and colorful. Either way, we are very pleased with the results of this year’s Goals and Saves of the Week and are looking forward to a promising MLS Cup Final this Sunday.