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Yedlin, Hyndman among U.S. Soccer Young Male Athlete of the Year Nominees


Photo by Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports


DeAndre Yedlin’s meteoric rise through the ranks of U.S. Soccer has culminated in a 2014 award nomination.

U.S. Soccer announced Thursday that the Seattle Sounders defender is one of four nominees for U.S. Soccer Young Male Athlete of the Year. Yedlin, who was one of just seven players to appear in more than 10 U.S. Men’s National Team games in 2014, is joined by midfielders Mukwelle Akale, Emerson Hyndman and Christian Pulisic, as well as forward Haji Wright.

Akale earned a pair of MVP trophies for the U.S. U-18’s this year, while Wright and Pulisic have led the attacking charge for the U.S. U-17’s. Meanwhile, Hyndman, who made his senior debut in September against the Czech Republic, prominently featured for the U-20’s and U-23’s throughout the 2014 campaign.

Friday’s nominations come following U.S. Soccer’s announcement that Tim Howard has been recognized as Male Athlete of the Year, beating out Kyle Beckerman, Alejandro Bedoya, Clint Dempsey, Fabian Johnson and Jermaine Jones for the award.

What do you think of the nominees? Any surprises or snubs?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. If I were voting for the United States Young Soccer Player of the Year.

    The nominees for the US Young Soccer Player of the Year 2014 have done themselves, their Communities and their Country proud and I commend them. The voters have a difficult task because any one who wins it would have earned the honor.

    My choice would be MUKWELLE AKALE for the overall impact of performances overseas and within the US.

    Consider the following:
    • He was named MVP of the Atlantic Tournament; playing for a team which did not win a single game.
    • He won it with a cumulative point total, significantly higher than that of the runner-up. It was not close.
    • He played in this tournament with most of the players nominated for this honor.
    • The 19 and 20 year olds who played in this tournament, especially for Argentina and Spain are regarded as some of the best young prospects in the world. They came from top teams like Barcelona, Real Madrid and more. A handful of them are well established players on their clubs playing with the senior teams.
    • His MVP award in the Czech Republic and his performances for Villareal establish for a fact, that he is consistently performing in the ‘zone’ – a most unusual characteristic.

    Analysis –

    One can only extrapolate from these honors that he (Mukwelle) is viewed as an impact player with a sophisticated grasp of the game worthy of these supreme recognitions.

    The impact is that these performances have contributed to raising perceptions of American soccer to immeasurable heights, highlighting American youth talent in terms of their technical abilities and overall skills.

    His performances also propel the strongest possible statement about the quality and soundness of youth programs in the United States – validating those who have worked tirelessly in quest of a way to bring out the best in our kids.

    The outcome is that top teams from Europe are taking a serious look at our players. That US team, even in its losses achieved so much that is heartwarming and inspiration with a good many of them cited for excellent performances in the tournament.

  2. Sorry Del. My dad is also making be apologize to JK. Hey, your name is close to that shower ring guy’s name from Chicago! My vote goes to Akale BTW.

  3. I think that Akale is at the top of the list here, he won the best player at a tournament with Argentinas U20s and Spains U19s against players that are are Barcelona, Real Madrid and Manchester city, no one seems to realize that no american has ever done something like that

  4. Yedlin is the biggest name, of course, but Pulisic has been nothing short of remarkable this year for the U-17s. That would be my choice from these nominees.

  5. All the German Americans like Green were snubbed. Seems to be on this list you had do a large part of your development in the US. Interesting

    • Visibility counts. This is, after all, a USSF award.

      Four of the five put in a lot of time with the various USSF youth teams. The fifth was Yedlin, who was arguably the breakout US star of the World Cup and then garnered the high profile transfer to Spurs.

      Green did not put in a lot of time with the various youth teams and was mostly known for being a lightning rod for JK’s critics.

      Some previous winners:

      1998 Josh Wolff
      1999 Ben Olsen
      2000 Landon Donovan
      2001 DaMarcus Beasley
      2002 Bobby Convey
      2003 Freddy Adu
      2004 Eddie Johnson
      2005 Benny Feilhaber
      2006 Jozy Altidore
      2007 Michael Bradley
      2008 Sacha Kljestan
      2009 Luis Gil
      2010 Gale Agbossoumonde
      2011 Brek Shea

    • wood chip, which German American besides Green would you say should be up for this list; I remind you, its a YOUTH award. It’s also a US soccer, so while their club play is most likely considered, I’d imagine it’s largely based on USSF games. Green has only played a handful of games FOR THE US, thus, unless he starred in most of those games–which he didn’t, he shouldn’t be on this list. As stated in this article…. all of the nominees were big parts of a NT. This isn’t a “who’s the best young talent” award.


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