FRISCO, Texas — The National Soccer Hall of Fame Wednesday released the names of all candidates eligible for election in 2021.

The Hall of Fame also released the new selection committee, which was established as part of 2020 election revisions, for the first time. The committees begin deliberations this week to select a three- or four-member Class of 2021 from the 245 candidates who appear on the player, veteran and builder ballots.

The 2021 Hall of Fame ceremony is scheduled for May 22 and will enshrine both the 2020 class (Carlos Bocanegra and Colin Jose Media Award winner Andrés Cantor) and the 2021 class. The ceremony will take place in the National Soccer Hall of Fame, followed by the Hall of Fame game between FC Dallas and an opponent TBD and a concert featuring Willie Nelson.

Player Ballot

Players in their first year of eligibility are U.S. national team World Cup alumni Maurice Edu (2010), Oguchi Onyewu (2006 and 2010) and Christie Pearce (1999, 2003, 2007, 2011 and 2015); MLS Best XI selections Victor Bernardez (2012), Bobby Boswell (2006 and 2014), Jon Busch (2008), Shalrie Joseph (2005, 2007-2009), Sebastien LeToux (2010) and Javier Morales (2010); and NWSL Best XI selection Brittany Taylor (2015).

Players eligible for the first time from the Extended National Teams based on 2020’s eligibility revisions include Chris Ahrens, Keith Johnson, Josh McKinney and Gavin Sibayan from the U.S. Para 7-A-Side national team and John Ball, Jamar Beasley, Pat Morris and Matt Stewart from the U.S. Futsal National Team.

Player Eligibility

In order to be eligible for election as a player, an individual must be retired for at least three full calendar years, but for no more than 10 full calendar years, and have either:

Played in at least 20 full international games for the U.S. Men’s National Team, Women’s National Team or Extended National Teams (Paralympic, Beach & Futsal).
or

Played at least five seasons in an American first-division professional league and been named to a postseason league All-Star team at least once.

New voting rules and procedures take effect this year to provide more consistency in the screening of candidates and within voting pools. An 18-member Player Screening Committee will narrow the list of candidates to a final ballot of 20 players, which will go to the full 48-member Player Voting Committee. Each voter can select up to 10 candidates; players named to the most ballots gain election as follows:

* If both a Veteran and a Builder are being elected, the top two vote earners from the Player ballot also will be elected.

* If either a Veteran or a Builder are not being elected, the top three vote-earning Players will be elected if all three received at least 66.7% of the Voting Committee’s votes.

* If neither a Veteran nor a Builder are being elected, the top three vote-earning Players will be elected if all three received at least 50 percent of the Voting Committee’s votes.

A player must be named to at least 50 percent of Voting Committee ballots to be eligible.

Of the 41 individuals on the Player Ballot, three are in their final year of eligibility: U.S. men’s national team World Cup alumni Gregg Berhalter (2002) and Frankie Hejduk (1998 and 2002), and U.S. Futsal World Cup alumnus Pat Morris.

If not elected in 2021, these candidates will move to the Veteran Ballot in 2022.

All eligible candidates who can be considered for election to the National Soccer Hall of Fame Class of 2021 via the Veteran and Builder categories also have been announced.

Veteran Ballot

Seven retired players have moved from the Player Ballot to the Veteran Ballot. Players in their first year of eligibility on the Veteran ballot include U.S. National Team World Cup alumni Eddie Lewis (2002 and 2006), Kate Sobrero Markgraf (1999, 2003 and 2007) and Clint Mathis (2002); U.S. National Team alumni Chris Klein (2000-2006) and Kristin Luckenbill (2004); and MLS Best XI selections Jaime Moreno (1997, 1999, 2004-2006) and Steve Ralston (1999, 2000 and 2002).

Veteran Eligibility

In order to be eligible for election as a veteran, an individual must be retired for more than 10 full calendar years and have either:

Played in at least 20 full international games for the U.S. Men’s National Team, Women’s National Team or Extended National Team (10 games if prior to 1990 or five games if prior to 1960).

or

Played at least five seasons in an American first-division professional league and been named to a postseason league All-Star team at least once.

or

Played at least five seasons in the Major Indoor Soccer League between the end of the NASL in 1984 and the end of the MISL in 1992 and been selected as a first-team all-star.

Under the new voting rules, a nine-member Veteran Screening Committee will narrow the list of candidates to a final ballot of 10 candidates.

Each member of the full 24-member Veteran Voting Committee may select up to five Veterans; the candidate who receives the most ballots and is named to at least 50 percent of the ballots will be elected.

Builder Ballot

For the 2021 election, 102 individuals are available for selection via the Builder ballot. In order to be eligible in this category, an individual must have made a mark on soccer in a non-playing capacity and had a major, sustained and positive impact on soccer in the United States on a national or first-division professional level. Individuals on this list must be at least 50-years-old and have at least 10 years of impact at the requisite level. There are 99 people on the 2021 Builder Eligibility List.

Three individuals (Clive Charles, Tim Hankinson and Lincoln Phillips) are available for selection in 2021 election via the Builder Nominee List. This new nomination and waiver system was approved by the NSHOF Board heading into the 2021 election process to allow each nominee to be considered alongside the Builder Eligibility List.

The builder category will be broken into separate groups on an annual rotating basis. Depending on the year, only referees, coaches or contributors will be considered for induction, and every four years — including 2021 — all eligible builders will be considered for election.

In such years that all eligible builders are considered for election, a nine-member Builder Screening Committee will narrow the list of candidates to a final ballot of 10 finalists. Each member of the 24-member Builder Voting Committee may select up to five builders; the candidate who receives the most ballots and is named to at least 50 percent of the ballots will be elected.

 

 

More Information
Complete information about the election and eligibility procedures is available online at NationalSoccerHoF.com. The election process is administered by National Soccer Hall of Fame staff under election and eligibility guidelines established by the Hall of Fame Board of Directors.Established in 1950, the National Soccer Hall of Fame is dedicated to the sport of soccer in America by celebrating its history, preserving its legacy, inspiring its youth and honoring its heroes for generations to come.
  • See ALL Eligible Player Candidates HERE
  • See ALL Eligible Veteran Candidates HERE
  • See ALL Eligible Builder Candidates HERE
  • List of 2021 NSHOF Selection Committee Members HERE