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Matt Miazga Named MLS Defender of the Year

November 13, 2023 - Major League Soccer (MLS)
FC Cincinnati News Release


FC Cincinnati center back Matt Miazga has been named the 2023 Major League Soccer Defender of the Year, the league announced today. Miazga becomes the first Cincinnati player in club history to receive an individual MLS Year-End award.

The stalwart defender has led an improved Cincinnati back line and defense since joining the Orange and Blue in August 2022 from Chelsea FC in the Premier League. In the 36 games he was on the field for Cincinnati in 2023, the Miazga-led defense allowed just 35 goals (0.97 goals per game). He started 12 games in which the club held their opponents scoreless, and his 10 MLS regular season clean sheets are tied for the fourth-most among outfield players in the league.

Playing a key role in FC Cincinnati's dramatic turnaround over the last two seasons, the club holds a 27-6-15 record in all matches that Miazga has appeared in and has advanced to the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs at the conclusion of both seasons, while capturing the MLS Supporters' Shield in 2023. Miazga was one of three FC Cincinnati players to make the MLS All-Star team in 2023, joined by midfielders Luciano Acosta and Álvaro Barreal.

The 6-foot-4 defender has made 28 appearances with the United States Men's National Team and was a member of the 2017 Concacaf Gold Cup and 2019-20 Concacaf Nations League-winning squads. He becomes the 17th different U.S. International to receive the honor.

The Defender of the Year award was voted on by MLS club technical staff, media, and current MLS players. Below is a breakdown of the voting results:

2023 MLS Defender of the Year Voting Breakdown

Name Player Vote Club Vote Media Vote Average Vote

Matt Miazga (CIN) 16.56% 26.83% 32.95% 25.45%

Tim Parker (STL) 19.11% 2.44% 9.83% 10.46%

Yeimar Gomez Andrade 3.82% 7.32% 16.76% 9.30%

A full list of MLS Defender of the Year award winners can be found below:

MLS Defender of the Year Winners

Season Player Club

2023 Matt Miazga FC Cincinnati

2022

Jakob Glesnes

Philadelphia Union

2021

Walker Zimmerman

Nashville SC

2020

Walker Zimmerman

Nashville SC

2019

Ike Opara

Minnesota United FC

2018

Aaron Long

New York Red Bulls

2017

Ike Opara

Sporting Kansas City

2016

Matt Hedges

FC Dallas

2015

Laurent Ciman

Montréal Impact

2014

Chad Marshall

Seattle Sounders FC

2013

Jose Goncalves

New England Revolution

2012

Matt Besler

Sporting Kansas City

2011

Omar Gonzalez

LA Galaxy

2010

Jamison Olave

Real Salt Lake

2009

Chad Marshall

Columbus Crew

2008

Chad Marshall

Columbus Crew

2007

Michael Parkhurst

New England Revolution

2006

Bobby Boswell

D.C. United

2005

Jimmy Conrad

Kansas City Wizards

2004

Robin Fraser

Columbus Crew

2003

Carlos Bocanegra

Chicago Fire

2002

Carlos Bocanegra

Chicago Fire

2001

Jeff Agoos

San Jose Earthquakes

2000

Peter Vermes

Kansas City Wizards

1999

Robin Fraser

LA Galaxy

1998

Lubos Kubik

Chicago Fire

1997

Eddie Pope

D.C. United

1996

John Doyle

San Jose Clash

FC Cincinnati continue their quest for MLS Cup presented by Audi, as they welcome the Philadelphia Union in the Eastern Conference Semifinals on Saturday, November 25 (8 p.m. ET, MLS Season Pass).

Local radio broadcast details will be confirmed at a later time. Tickets are available at FCCincinnati.com/Tickets or by calling (513) 977-5425 (KICK).

For up-to-the-minute information about FC Cincinnati, visit the team's official website at fccincinnati.com, or follow the team on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook at @FCCincinnati. Additionally, fans are encouraged to download the team's new official mobile app on iOS or Android for instant access to mobile tickets, team content and match notifications.


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