BY SPNW Staff 11:05AM 11/27/2012

Eddie Johnson Named MLS Comeback Player

Eddie Johnson of the Seattle Sounders, who led the club in scoring with 14 goals during the 2012 season, finishing sixth in the Golden Boot race, Tuesday was named Major League’s Soccer Comeback Player of the Year. The announcement was made by league Commissioner Don Garber.

“Eddie Johnson had a great resurgence with Seattle,” Garber said. “Eddie joined our league when he was 17 years old and had one of his best years with us at 28.  I still think he has a number of good years left in him.”

“I would like the entire Sounders organization for giving me this opportunity in Seattle,” said Johnson. “This was a fun and exciting year and I share this award with my coaches and teammates for pushing me to be the best player I can be.”

Johnson, who led the league with nine header goals, and added three goals in outside competitions, signed with the Sounders Feb. 17, 2012, after playing four years in Europe. He has been capped 44 times by the US National Team, including two appearances in 2012 World Cup Qualifiers.

In his return to the national team, Johnson netted two goals against Antigua and Barbuda and an assist against Guatemala, helping the United States advance to the hexagonal stage. He now has 14 goals for the US National Team, and ranks second all-time with 10 goals in World Cup Qualifiers.

Johnson was named MLS Player of the Week twice this past season (Weeks 22 and 27) as he helped lead the Sounders to the Western Conference finals for the first time. Johnson was named to the Team of the Week three times, and was also named an MLS All-Star for the third time in his career.

He was previously named Comeback Player of the Year with Kansas City in 2007.

According to MLS, Johnson won the media vote with 37.88 percent and the player vote with 34.04 percent. D.C. United’s Chris Pontius, who came back from a broken leg, led the club vote with 40.35 percent.

Alan Gordon of San Jose finished third in the voting, followed by FC Dallas star David Ferreira and Seattle’s Steve Zakuani.

Seattle’s Michael Gspurning is one of the finalists for Goalkeeper of the Year.


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