We gave our readers the opportunity to vote on five “bests” of 2017, Minnesota United’s inaugural season in Major League Soccer. After weeding out clearly fraudulent, repeated responses, we were extremely pleased with voter turnout. Some of the awards were close, others, not so much. But without further ado, the winners of the 2017 E Pluribus Loonum Readers’ Choice Awards:
Goal of the Year: Abu Danladi’s stunning winner in Montreal
This rocket from Danladi, the first overall pick from the 2017 SuperDraft, was a beautiful goal by itself, but the fact that it secured a road victory only sweetens the deal.
Runner-up: Kevin Molino’s stoppage time winner in Atlanta
Game of the Year: MNUFC 4-2 Real Salt Lake (April 1)
What a game this was. After a string of, well, disappointing results, the Loons put up four goals to secure the club’s first MLS win, plus let fans give a magical rendition of Wonderwall.
Runner-up: Atlanta United 2-3 MNUFC (October 3)
Young Player of the Year: Abu Danladi
The rookie forward scored eight goals in just fifteen appearances, while consistently pushing for a spot in the starting lineup. Danladi scored both goals in the Loons’ first road victory, against the Chicago Fire.
Runner-up: Sam Nicholson
Newcomer of the Year: Jerome Thiesson
Because there were so many players new to MNUFC, the only players up for this award were those who were playing in their first MLS season as well. After arriving just in time for the home opener, Jerry never missed a game, and contributed as both a left and right back, as well as becoming a fan favorite.
Runner-up: Francisco Calvo
Readers’ Player of the Year: Christian Ramirez
There were doubts over whether or not Superman’s NASL abilities would transfer to a higher league, but Ramirez netted 13 goals and has drawn attention from the United States and Colombia national teams.
Runner-up: Bobby Shuttleworth