Houston’s DaMarcus Beasley averaged .54 fouls a game this past season. (Photo courtesy of MLS)
NEW YORK – Major League Soccer Tuesday announced Houston Dynamo defender DaMarcus Beasley and Seattle Sounders FC as the individual and team MLS Fair Play award winners.
Professional Referee Organization officials Allen Chapman and Corey Parker have were named as referee and assistant referee of the year, respectively.
A two-time MLS all-star and U.S. national team player, DaMarcus Beasley averaged a league-low .54 fouls per outing after logging 1,985 minutes over the span of 24 regular season games. With starts in all but two of his 2017 regular season appearances, Beasley was unblemished in disciplinary action, not receiving a yellow card or red card in league play. He committed the fewest fouls of any active player on a Dynamo backline that this season posted the best Western Conference home record.
Jahmir Hyka (San Jose Earthquakes) and Dave Romney (LA Galaxy) were finalists for the award, which is selected based upon subjective evaluations on sportsmanlike behavior, as well as objective criteria such as fouls committed, cards received, games and minutes played.
For the first time in the club’s nine-year MLS history, Seattle Sounders FC claimed the MLS Fair Play Award team award, which recognizes the MLS club with the fewest regular season disciplinary points. Disciplinary points are derived by adding the points assigned to fouls committed (3 points per), yellow cards (3 points per), red cards (7 point per) and supplemental points (8 points per each disciplinary action taken). Sounders FC finished the season with 477 disciplinary points (14.45/game), Toronto FC was second (492; 14.91) and the Chicago Fire was third (554; 16.79).
Chapman garnered more than 48 percent of the player vote, 54 percent of the club vote, and 40 percent of the media vote. Chapman is a seasoned PRO official with MLS experience dating back to his first match in 2012. He has officiated in the MLS Cup Playoffs from the center and he last year served as the fourth official during MLS Cup.
Earning his second MLS assistant referee of the Year honors in three years, Parker received 60 percent of the overall vote, including 50 percent of the player vote, 68 percent of the club vote, and 23 percent of the media vote. Parker was the 2015 recipient of the award, and has been on the FIFA panel dating back to that year. He has run the sidelines at key MLS events, including the 2014 MLS all-star game, MLS Cup Playoffs and MLS Cup 2015.
Nominated by U.S. Soccer, Canadian Soccer Association and the MLS competition committee, candidates for MLS referee of the year and assistant referee of the year awards were voted on by MLS club management media and MLS players.