Sebastian Giovinco, David Villa headline MLS Best XI

The TFC and NYCFC stars make return appearances while seven others get the nod for the first time

Major League Soccer has named its Best XI for the 2017 season, with New York City FC star David Villa, Toronto's Sebastian Giovinco, Vancouver's Kendall Waston and Portland's Diego Valeri all returning to the list. 

Giovinco and Valeri are each making their third appearance on the Best XI, while Waston and Villa have each been selected once before. 

Tim Melia (Sporting Kansas City), Justin Morrow (Toronto FC), Ike Opara (Sporting Kansas City), Miguel Almiron (Atlanta United), Víctor Vazquez (Toronto FC), Josef Martínez (Atlanta United) and Nemanja Nikolic (Chicago Fire) are the seven first-timers who round out the XI. 

Sporting KC teammates Melia and Opara were names as the top goalkeeper and top defender in the league, while Valeri, Villa, Giovinco, Almiron and Nikolic are all in the running for the MLS MVP award. 

Martinez netted 19 goals for Atlanta United in his debut MLS season to earn his spot, while Morrow and Vazquez both played a major part in Toronto FC's historic Supporters' Shield-winning side alongside Giovinco.  

Waston was a finalist for MLS Defender of the Year after another stellar season for the Whitecaps. 

The 2017 Best XI, as selected by media, skewed heavily toward attacking talent, with four forwards and three attacking midfielders named in the 11-man team. 


2017 MLS Best XI

Goalkeeper: Tim Melia (Sporting Kansas City)

Defenders: Justin Morrow (Toronto FC), Ike Opara (Sporting Kansas City), Kendall Waston (Vancouver Whitecaps FC)

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Midfielders: Miguel Almirón (Atlanta United), Víctor Vázquez (Toronto FC), Diego Valeri (Portland Timbers)

Forwards: Sebastian Giovinco (Toronto FC), Josef Martínez (Atlanta United), Nemanja Nikolić (Chicago Fire), David Villa (New York City FC)


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