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Major League Soccer's postseason awards are wrapping up this week as well as the MLS Cup finals being held in Toronto. Yesterday we found out who would be the "Best XI", aka MLS first team players.
Real Salt Lake set another record for the franchise with having 3 players selected to the team - Jamison Olave, Nat Borchers and Javier Morales. Both Borchers and Olave were finalist for defender of the year and Morales had the most talk for Most Valuable Players, but was not named as one of the final three. It once again is a testament of the system in place at RSL which gives you results.
The LA Galaxy had 4 players selected - Landon Donavan, Omar Gonzalaz, Edson Buddle, and Donavan Ricketts at goal. Ricketts was going to get this spot for being named Goal Keeper of the year. We addressed that a few weeks back, even though Ricketts had a great season, two other goalies had better season then him and RSL could of easily had 4 players instead of LA.
Also to note ReAL will need to make official their list of players they want to keep protected for the Expansion Draft. Rules imply that you can only have 11 players selected for protection. Other players that are protected are Designated Players which RSL does not have and Generation Adidas players which RSL does have.
Twice in the last two years the expansion teams have picked up Salt Lake players with Philadelphia Union taking Chris Seitz and the Seattle Sounder picking Nate Sturgis, who has turned into a very good midfielder for the Sounders. RSL could lose one of their up and coming players, which in most cases is what happens like Nelson Gonzalez, Paula Jr or Andy Williams could be taken if for his experience. But, it will be a tough decision for management to protect players and hope no one else is taken. History shows that the better teams tend to lose players in the expansion drafts.