Sports

Lionel Messi is SNUBBED by MLS after being left out of their season’s Best XI, despite winning the Ballon d’Or… with every player chosen making the playoffs and eight first-time selections

  • Lionel Messi has been snubbed by MLS after being left out of their Best XI
  • Luciano Acosta, Denis Bouanga and Thiago Almada were big-name inclusions
  • DailyMail.com provides all the latest international sports news 

Lionel Messi was the big omission from this season’s MLS Best XI, despite winning the Ballon d’Or and his huge impact since arriving at Inter Miami.

Messi scored 11 goals and contributed five assists in 14 appearances for Inter Miami before their season ended after missing out on the playoffs.

He also guided them to Leagues Cup glory but his form since arriving in Florida in  July has not warranted a spot in the MLS Best XI for the season. 

Determined by members of the media, MLS players and club staff – the players selected in the team represent seven clubs who all made the postseason. 

There are also eight first-time selections in the team with four clubs having two players selected.

Lionel Messi was the big omission from this season's MLS Best XI, announced on Tuesday

Lionel Messi was the big omission from this season’s MLS Best XI, announced on Tuesday

Messi won the Ballon d'Or and scored 11 goals in 14 appearances for Inter Miami since July

Messi won the Ballon d’Or and scored 11 goals in 14 appearances for Inter Miami since July

Beating Messi to a place in attack is Denis Bouanga of LAFC. He claimed the MLS’ golden boot with 20 goals and seven assists in 31 appearances. 

Bouanga is currently one short of teammate Carlos Vela’s record for goals in a calendar year with 37 across all competitions so far in 2023.

Atlanta United’s Giorgos Giakoumakis has also been selected up front. He won this year’s newcomer of the year award thanks to his 17 goals in 27 matches.

Giakoumakis had the unenviable task of replacing Atlanta legend Josef Martinez when he arrived from Celtic but has proven to be a clinical successor.

Joining them up front in a 3-4-3 formation is Cucho of Columbus Crew. He’s caught the eye in Ohio with 16 goals and 11 assists in his first full season.

Leading the midfield, unsurprisingly, is MVP Luciano Acosta.

The FC Cincinnati midfielder has enjoyed a hugely impressive season with 18 goals and 12 assists to his name, and he could yet steer his team to MLS Cup success.

Denis Bouanga of LAFC won the MLS' golden boot with 20 goals and seven assists in 31 games

Denis Bouanga of LAFC won the MLS’ golden boot with 20 goals and seven assists in 31 games

Acosta has enjoyed a hugely impressive season with 18 goals and 12 assists to his name

Almada led the league and set a club record for assists in a single season with 19

Luciano Acosta (left) and Thiago Almada (right) were easy selections in the team’s midfield

Swiss goalkeeper Roman Burki helped St. Louis City to 17 wins during their inaugural season

Swiss goalkeeper Roman Burki helped St. Louis City to 17 wins during their inaugural season

Acosta received a huge 60.37 percent of the MVP votes, easily beating second-placed LAFC forward Bouanga (14.97%) and Thiago Almada (6.46%).

Lining up alongside him is Atlanta United’s Almada, who won the MLS young player of the year award.

He led the league and set a club record for assists in a single season with 19 and is attracting plenty of transfer interest from European clubs. 

Joining them in midfield is Houston Dynamo’s Hector Herrera and Hany Mukhtar of Nashville. 

MLS defender of the year Matt Miazga is the focal point of the defense after an assured season for Cincinnati that saw them only concede 39 goals. He also helped keep a clean sheet in 10 starts.

Veteran defender Tim Parker helped St. Louis City to first place in the western conference so he’s included and another solid campaign from Walker Zimmerman at Nashville has earned him a place to round out the defense.

In goal is Swiss stopper Roman Burki. He helped St. Louis City to 17 wins during their inaugural season and managed the second-most saves this season and fourth-highest save percentage among active MLS goalkeepers.  

Related posts

Chelsea ‘strategy swoop to authorize Sadio Mane’ with Bayern Munich star anticipated to leave in the summer season

News Epistle

Liverpool captain Virgil van Dijk could face further punishment after appearing to label Newcastle red card as a ‘f****** joke’ that may be classed as improper conduct towards officials

News Epistle

CHRIS FOY: No risk and also no idea, English club rugby is fading before our eyes

News Epistle

Leave a Comment