Five Members of Real Salt Lake Finalists for MLS End-of-season Awards


RSL Head Coach Jason Kreis Nominated for Coach of the Year;

Defense Noticed with Nick Rimando a Finalist for Goalkeeper of the Year,

Center Backs Jamison Olave and Nat Borchers Both up for Defender of the Year;

FW Álvaro Saborío Recognized as Finalist for Newcomer of the Year Honor

SANDY, Utah (Thursday, October 28, 2010)Major League Soccer has officially announced the finalists for the League’s end-of-season awards, a list that includes five members of Real Salt Lake: Head Coach Jason Kreis, GK Nick Rimando, DF Jamison Olave, DF Nat Borchers, and FW Álvaro Saborío.


Jason Kreis – MLS Coach of the Year

Kreis’ main objective in 2010 was to prove the Claret-and-Cobalt’s MLS Cup Championship last year was no fluke by achieving consistency in the regular season. While juggling two competitions in MLS League play (15-4-11) and CONCACAF Champions League (4-1-1), Kreis continuously expected positive results of his squad, and he expertly mixed in players from the deepest bench in the League to achieve such lofty results.


RSL earned the credibility Kreis sought by contending for the Supporters Shield up until the final day of the season, finishing the best regular season in team history with 56 points, crushing its previous high-water mark of 40 and falling just three points short of the Shield-winning LA Galaxy. The Omaha native paved the way for success that resulted in club records in total points (56), away points (19) and home points (37); League records that included overall goal differential (+25), fewest goals allowed (20), and home goals allowed (7); and being the first MLS team in nine tries to win its group in the CONCACAF Champions League. The plaudits and records collected by the Claret-and-Cobalt this season might have been earned by the players on the pitch, but Kreis’ “Team is the Star” philosophy that he instilled since day one when hired in 2007 proved to be the foundation for such accolades.


Nick Rimando – MLS Goalkeeper of the Year

Rimando enjoyed the best season of his illustrious 11-year MLS career, a campaign that included his first ever MLS All-Star Game appearance, a career- and League-high 14 shutouts and a career-high goals against average of 0.67, a mark that was the second lowest in League annals. His abilities as the League’s premier shot-stopper were evident, as he saved 78% of all shots on his goal. The UCLA product was a key cog in RSL’s record-setting defense, as he posted the two longest shutout streaks in MLS this season, the 568-minute (3rd all-time) and 511-minute (6th all-time) stretches contributing to the 3rd and 4th longest shutout runs in MLS history.


Jamison Olave – MLS Defender of the Year

The discipline and attention troubles that plagued Olave in previous seasons were a thing of the past in 2010, as the center back only missed one game due to yellow card accumulation and proved to be a lynchpin in the Utah side’s back line. The hulking Colombian’s strength and athleticism were on full display across his 27 MLS contests, proving just as adept at boxing out opposing attackers as he did tracking down through balls and stray passes in RSL’s defensive third. Olave was an integral part of the defensive back line that set an MLS all-time low of 20 goals allowed for the entire regular season. Often overlooked was Olave’s improving ability in the opponent’s penalty area, his danger on set pieces providing RSL with three tallies this season, good for a tie for 5th on the squad’s scoring chart.


Nat Borchers – MLS Defender of the Year

Borchers had another solid year as the commander of the Real Salt Lake backfield. Borchers saw his leadership role on the field expand in 2010, as the Colorado native took on the role of Captain for the two months following an injury to MF Kyle Beckerman in May. The “Ironman” of the squad, Borchers was the only RSL player to start all 30 regular season contests and saw 2,673 minutes of action, also tops on the team and the fifth most across MLS in 2010. Borchers also provided a flair for the dramatic on the offensive end, as his first goal of the year – and first score in MLS play in 41 games – in the final minutes of stoppage time on Sept. 25 against archrival Colorado saved Real Salt Lake’s MLS-record home undefeated streak, which now stands at 25 games. Apparently his taste for scoring wasn’t satisfied, as he duplicated his backward header from the Rocky Mountain Cup affair a week later at New England, kicking off RSL’s scoring in an eventual 2-1 road win against the Revs.


Álvaro Saborío – MLS Newcomer of the Year

After losing Yura Movsisyan in the offseason, the biggest question for Real Salt Lake appeared to be who would pick up his goal-scoring slack for the defending champs. Saborío answered that question resoundingly, leading Real Salt Lake in scoring in both League play (12 goals – 8th on MLS Golden Boot chart) and CONCACAF Champions League (6 goals – T-2nd in the 2010 portion of the competition). His introduction to the Claret-and-Cobalt was a dramatic one, as he headed home the equalizing goal in the 94+’ against Seattle Sounders FC in RSL’s home opener, punctuating the squad’s Championship celebration evening and keeping alive what would turn out to be the longest home unbeaten run in League history.


While Saborio’s goal-scoring total was prolific, his scores were also clutch, as the Costa Rican international tallied five match-winners and ended the regular season with a flourish, his double in stoppage time at Colorado single-handedly allowing RSL to earn a 2-2 draw and continue its team-record 14-match undefeated run. While MLS competition is the focus for all awards, factoring in RSL’s 2010/11 CONCACAF success brings Saborío’s totals to 18 goals in 32 games – the scoring haul equal to MVP candidate and MLS Golden Boot winner Chris Wondolowski of San Jose.


Below is the complete list of all finalists for all MLS end-of-season awards and the dates the winners will be announced:


Goalkeeper of the Year Finalists

  • Kevin Hartman (FC Dallas)
  • Donovan Ricketts (LA Galaxy)
  • Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)


Fair Play Finalists - Individual

  • C.J. Brown (Chicago Fire)
  • Sebastien Le Toux (Philadelphia Union)
  • Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)


Comeback Player of the Year Finalists

  • Chris Albright (New York Red Bulls)
  • Bobby Convey (San Jose Earthquakes)
  • Brek Shea (FC Dallas)


Visa Defender of the Year Finalists

  • Nat Borchers (Real Salt Lake)
  • Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy)
  • Jamison Olave (Real Salt Lake)


MLS W.O.R.K.S. Humanitarian of the Year Finalists

  • Brian Ching (Houston Dynamo)
  • Jimmy Conrad (Kansas City Wizards)
  • Seth Stammler (New York Red Bulls)


adidas Referee of the Year Finalists

  • Mark Geiger
  • Kevin Stott
  • Baldomero Toledo


Rookie of the Year Finalists

  • Danny Mwanga (Philadelphia Union)
  • Andy Najar (D.C. United)
  • Tim Ream (New York Red Bulls)


Coach of the Year Finalists

  • Hans Backe (New York Red Bulls)
  • Schellas Hyndman (FC Dallas)
  • Jason Kreis (Real Salt Lake)


Newcomer of the Year Finalists

  • Thierry Henry (New York Red Bulls)
  • Joel Lindpere (New York Red Bulls)
  • Álvaro Saborío (Real Salt Lake)


Volkswagen Most Valuable Player Finalists

  • Edson Buddle (LA Galaxy)
  • David Ferreira (FC Dallas)
  • Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)


Awards Announcements Schedule (Schedule subject to change)

November 3: Rookie of the Year, Fair Play Individual & Team of the Year, and Goalkeeper of the Year

November 5: Visa Defender and adidas Referee/Assistant Referee of the Year

November 8: MLS W.O.R.K.S. Humanitarian of the Year

November 10: Newcomer and Comeback Player of the Year

November 11: MLS Coach of the Year

November 15: 2010 MLS Best XI

November 17: AT&T Goal of the Year and NAPA Auto Parts Save of the Year

November 19: Volkswagen MVP & Commissioner’s Award / / /