Philadelphia Union Midfielder Ilsinho Named MLS Player of the Week
CHESTER, Pa. - Philadelphia Union announced today that midfielder Ilsinho was voted the Major League Soccer Player of the Week for Week 15 of the 2019 MLS regular season.
On Saturday, June 8, the Union were trailing 2-0 to the New York Red Bulls when Ilsinho entered the game in the 53rd minute. By the 72nd minute, after the Brazilian contributed two goals and one assist, the Union were ahead 3-2, which proved to be the final score as Philadelphia came back from down two goals to win a regular-season match for the first time in club history.
Ilsinho's first contribution was an assist to midfielder Jamiro Monteiro, a cutback from the right side that the Cape Verde international finished with his left foot to draw the Union within one. Just one minute later, Ilsinho scored his first goal to level the match, beating two defenders and finishing to the far post. It was the third time in Union history that the club scored two goals in consecutive minutes. Finally, the Brazilian put the Union ahead for good, beating Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles again with a rebound finish off of a saved penalty kick in the 72nd minute.
Ilsinho has proven to be the best attacking substitute in Major League Soccer. His three goals as a substitute are tied for the MLS lead in the category, while his five assists as a sub this year lead the league by three.
Over the 3.5 year span since the start of the 2016 MLS campaign, when Ilsinho first joined MLS and the Union, only two other players leaguewide have totaled five assists as a substitute: Raheem Edwards (six) and Vicente Sanchez (five). Ilsinho's nine helpers as a sub over that span are far and away the league's best.
This is the second MLS Player of the Week award for Ilsinho, after he previously earned the recognition after Week 18 of the 2016 campaign, when he scored two goals as part of 3-0 win over D.C. United. He is among a group of 10 different players in Union history to win the MLS Player of the Week award. Ilsinho joins Sebastien Le Toux as the only other player in Union history to win the award twice, and he is the first Union player to ever win it in two different seasons.
The full list of Union POTW award winners is as follows: Sebastien Le Toux (2010 [2x]), Justin Mapp (2011), Jack McInerney (2013), Chris Pontius (2016), Roland Alberg (2016), Ilsinho (2016, 2019), CJ Sapong (2017), Borek Dockal (2018), Jay Simpson (2018) and David Accam (2019).
The MLS Player of the Week is selected each week of the regular season through both media and fan voting in a process conducted by MLS Communications. A panel of journalists from the North American Soccer Reporters (NASR) comprises 75 percent of the vote, while a Twitter fan vote represents the remaining 25 percent of voting. NASR consists of members of print, television, radio and online media.
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