When New York Red Bulls head coach Hans Backe named the game-day roster for the 2011 MLS All-Star Team, there were destined to be players who many MLS fans felt were snubbed. It happens every year, but this year there seemed to be more snubs than usual.
It is clear that some of Backe's selections were made with more consideration toward building a team capable of beating Manchester United rather than rewarding the league's best players through the first half of the season. While that is his prerogative having been given that power by MLS, it can't be denied that some of Backe's picks were far less deserving than some other players who went ignored.
In some cases, like the Seattle Sounders and FC Dallas, CONCACAF Champions League commitments left them out of consideration for the All-Star Game, but as two of the top teams in MLS, they clearly had players deserving of being on the team, and while it might not be fair to say they were snubbed, there are still plenty of them who were deserving of all-star designation.
So what would a team look like of all the most deserving players who didn't make the MLS All-Star Game roster? Here are my picks:
The SBI MLS All-Star Snub Squad
GK– Nick Rimando, Kevin Hartman
D– George John, Nat Borchers, Carlos Valdes, Chad Marshall, Omar Gonzalez, Jan Gunnar Solli, Sheanon Williams, Todd Dunivant, Alain Rochat
M– Brek Shea, Osvaldo Alonso, Eddie Gaven, Daniel Hernandez, Mauro Rosales, Joel Lindpere, Davide Chiumiento.
F– Charlie Davies, Eric Hassli, Luke Rodgers, Fredy Montero
Of course, by naming this group, we've left ourselves open for the All-Snubbed from the All-Snub Team squad, but I'd say this group is a pretty fair representation of the best players in the first half of the season who were NOT chosen by Hans Backe.
What do you think of this group? Who are you happy to see make this group? What player isn't on this list that you feel should be?
Share your thoughts below.