Adams, Steffen, Trapp headline U.S. Soccer Male Player of the Year nominees

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The 2018 campaign was a difficult one for the USMNT, with several young faces standing out throughout the year

U.S. Soccer announced the federation's Male Player of the Year nominees following the 2018 finale, a 1-0 loss to Italy in Belgium.

Midfielders Tyler Adams, Weston McKennie and Wil Trapp, defender Matt Miazga and goalkeeper Zack Steffen are the five players nominated for the award with voting starting on Tuesday and ending om December 3.

The award will be announced during the first week of December and is voted on by national team coaches, players who have earned a cap in 2018, members of the U.S. Soccer Board of Directors, U.S. Soccer Athletes’ Council, MLS and USL head coaches, select media members and former players and administrators.

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Each player is a first-time nominee for the award, which went to Christian Pulisic in 2017.

Adams is the youngest of the five nominees and made his debut against Portugal last November. Since, the New York Red Bulls midfielder has proven himself a key piece of the team's rebuild, making eight appearances throughout 2018.

McKennie, who also debuted in that match against Portugal, started six times for the USMNT while breaking into Schalke's first team.

Trapp served as captain for the bulk of 2018, making nine appearances while finishing tied with Bobby Wood for most caps throughout the year.

One of 19 players to debut in 2018, Steffen led all goalkeepers with six appearances and kept two clean sheets while also making eight saves in the USMNT's 1-1 draw with eventual champions France just before the start of the World Cup.

Finally, Miazga was the USMNT's most consistent presence in defense, earning seven caps while concluding a loan move with Vitesse before starting one with French side Nantes.

Landon Donovan has won the award the most times, having won on four occasions while Clint Dempsey, who retired during the summer, won the award three times. 

The USMNT concluded 2018 with a record of three wins, five losses and three draws with the most recent matches being a 3-0 battering at the hands of England and the 1-0 loss to Italy.

In addition the the Male Player of the Year award nominees, U.S. Soccer also announced that Julie Ertz, Lindsey Horan, Tobin Heath, Alex Morgan and Megan Rapinoe have been nominated for Female Player of the Year. 

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