David Villa has scored 12 goals this season for NYCFC. (Anne-Marie Sorvin/USA TODAY Sports)
Really, was there ever any doubt?
New York City FC captain David Villa was voted into the Major League Soccer All-Star Fan XI.
In factg, he headlines three World Cup champions who were voted onto the team, it was announced Friday morning.
The MLS all-stars will face Spanish power UEFA Champions League winners Real Madrid in the all-star game in Chicago on Wednesday, Aug. 2 at 8:30 p.m. ET. (FS1, UniMás, TSN, and TVA Sports).
Alongside Villa in the Fan XI are World Cup winners Kaká (Orlando City SC) and Bastian Schweinsteiger (Chicago Fire). Along with Toronto FC star Sebastian Giovinco, the EA SPORTS™ “More Than a Vote” Challenge winner, these players account for three World Cup championships, three UEFA Champions League crowns, three Club World Cup winners, two FIFA Confederations Cup champs, one UEFA Euro title, 15 European league championships (Bundesliga, 8; La Liga, 4; Serie A, 3), and two MLS MVP awards.
Villa, the 2016 MLS Golden Ball winner (MVP), has tallied 12 goals in 18 games this season. He is on pace for more than 20 goals for the second successive and is in second place in the Golden Boot race. He finished second to the Red Bulls’ Bradley Wright-Phillips last year.
No Red Bulls player was voted in by the fans, although two former New York/New Jersey MetroStars were named: goalkeeper Tim Howard and midfileder Michael Bradley.
While 10 players on the Fan XI were chosen by fan voting online at MLSsoccer.com, the 11th performer was determined through the EA SPORTS™ “More Than a Vote” Challenge. Giovinco, the 2015 Golden Ball winner, took the top prize as fans scored more than 1.1 million goals for the Toronto FC star in EA SPORTS FIFA 17. Giovinco edged out Villa, who finished in the top five along with Toronto FC’s Jozy Altidore, LA Galaxy’s Gio dos Santos, and Chicago’s Nemanja Nikolic.
The full all-star gameday roster, consisting of 24 players, will be announced in mid-July and will include the Fan XI, two commissioner’s picks, and 11 players selected by all-star Head Coach Veljko Paunović, whose Chicago Fire leads the Eastern Conference.
MLS All-Star Fan XI
Goalkeeper: Tim Howard (Colorado Rapids)
Defenders: Greg Garza (Atlanta United), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City), DaMarcus Beasley (Houston Dynamo)
Midfielders: Bastian Schweinsteiger (Chicago Fire), Miguel Almirón (Atlanta United), Kaká (Orlando City SC), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC)
Forwards: David Villa (New York City FC), Nemanja Nikolić (Chicago Fire), Sebastian Giovinco (Toronto FC – EA SPORTS™ “More Than a Vote” Challenge)