Atlanta United added another individual trophy to its offseason haul with Monday’s announcement that Miguel Almiron was named the MLS Newcomer of the Year.
Almiron, an attacking midfielder, scored nine goals and had 14 assists in an All-Star season. The 23-year-old was signed as a Designated Player by Atlanta United before the season.
His speed, vision, accurate left foot and work on defense on both ends of the field helped manager Gerardo Martino implement his aggressive, pressing style.
Almiron won a vote of players, technical staff members and select media. The other finalists were teammate Josef Martinez, who scored 19 goals, and Chicago’s Nemanja Nikolic, who won the Golden Boot with 24 goals.
“For me it’s a big honor,” Almiron told Atlanta United. “It’s wonderful that they’ve voted for me and think about me. That speaks very well about the job that I’m doing, not just myself but all my teammates, the whole group, the whole team in Atlanta, and without them I couldn’t win the award.”
Teammate Julian Gressel was named the Rookie of the Year in the same voting system, and, in fan voting, Hector Villalba’s strike at Orlando City won the Goal of the Year and Brad Guzan was a part of the Save of the Year.
“…I think the whole team had a great year, even though we couldn’t accomplish our main goal of winning a championship,” Almiron said. “I think that’s due the work the team’s put in, the work of my teammates. I think that thanks to them I’m achieving this success and trying to improve so that we have a better year next year.”