Sounders FC’s 10-point lead in the MLS standings through that first-half success has been rewarded with three players named to the 2014 AT&T MLS All-Star team. Clint Dempsey, Obafemi Martins and DeAndre Yedlin are among the Fan XI that were named on Wednesday, giving Seattle the most representatives among the first 11 players selected for the match against Bayern Munich.
Dempsey, Martins and Yedlin are joined by goalkeeper Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake); defenders Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City) and Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy); midfielders Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake) and Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City); and forwards Thierry Henry (New York Red Bulls) and Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy).
This is Dempsey’s third All-Star nod and first since returning to MLS with Seattle last August. He was also on the All-Star team in 2005 and 2006 when he was with the New England Revolution. Now with Sounders FC, he has nine goals and three assists in just 10 matches, missing a large portion of the schedule while away with the U.S. National Team at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
Yedlin is making his second All-Star appearance after becoming the first rookie since 2005 to be named to the mid-season exhibition last year. Yedlin earned recognition for his standout rookie season with Seattle last year and exploded into the national consciousness this year with his 155 minutes with the U.S. National Team at the World Cup, where he wowed with his explosive runs up the right side while also showing his ability to defend as well.
Dempsey and Yedlin were among 10 players voted to the All-Star team in a fan vote online, while Martins earned his spot through the 2014 FIFA “More Than A Vote” Challenge, in which goals scored on the FIFA 14 video game equaled votes for the eligible forwards in the contest.
Martins has eight goals and six assists in 16 matches for Seattle this season after posting eight goals and four assists in 20 matches last season.
The remaining All-Stars will be named at halftime of the Sporting Kansas City-LA Galaxy match on Saturday. The MLS All-Stars will face Bayern Munich on August 6 at Providence Park in Portland.
With Martins and Dempsey earning their first All-Star honors in Rave Green, Seattle now has had nine different players earn All-Star spots. The others include Osvaldo Alonso and Kasey Keller three times, Freddie Ljungberg, Fredy Montero and Yedlin twice, and Jhon Kennedy Hurtado and Eddie Johnson once.