Real Salt Lake Midfielder Damir Kreilach Named to MLS All-Star Team
SANDY, Utah - Real Salt Lake midfielder Damir Kreilach has been named to the 2021 MLS All-Star roster by All-Star and LAFC Head Coach Bob Bradley. Kreilach will join the biggest stars in Major League Soccer at the annual summer event for the first time as the MLS All-Stars take on Mexico's Liga MX All-Stars in the 2021 MLS All-Star Game presented by Target at Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles on Wednesday, August 25 at 7 p.m. MT.
Download footage of Kreilach's reaction to his selection here.
Download footage of congratulatory messages for Kreilach here.
"It is such an honor to be chosen by Bob Bradley to represent Real Salt Lake at the All-Star Game. I am so proud of the efforts we have put in and I look forward to doing my best to represent the club," Kreilach said. "I would like to thank everyone in the RSL organization - my teammates, the coaching staff, the medical staff, the media staff, as well as the fans who mean so much to the club. I especially would like to thank my family. My wife and our families give me so much support here and back in Croatia and that's what pushes me to reach new heights every year and I couldn't do it without them."
Kreilach is in his fourth MLS season, joining Real Salt Lake in 2018 and making an instant impact with the club. With 12 goals and eight assists in his first season he was named RSL Most Valuable Player by his teammates. He also earned the RSL MVP Award in 2020 after leading the team with eight goals. In his RSL career, he has 33 goals and 19 assists in 100 regular season appearances, including seven goals and five assists in 14 games this season. In addition to his impressive regular season career stats, Kreilach also has four goals and one assist in five career MLS Cup Playoff matches.
"Damir deserves this. He has done so much for the club and scored so many big goals for the team and that is a product of his talent, but also his work ethic," RSL Head Coach Freddy Juarez said. "Every day since joining the team he has been dedicated to working at his craft and he sets such a great example for everyone to follow. This is a great achievement for him that recognizes all of his hard work and commitment."
The history-making match against the best of LIGA MX will take place on August 25 at 7 p.m. MT at Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles and will be broadcast live on FS1, Univision, TSN and TVA Sports. Tickets are available via Ticketmaster or by visiting LAFC.com.
The roster was determined through a combination of fan, player and media voting (13 players), designations by All-Star Head Coach Bob Bradley (13 players) and a pair of selections by MLS Commissioner Don Garber. The Commissioner's Picks for 2021 are New England Revolution forward Tajon Buchanan (age 22) and San Jose Earthquakes forward Cade Cowell (age 17) - two of the fastest-rising stars in MLS. Of the 28 players named, 24 are first-time MLS All-Stars.
Kreilach is the ninth different Real Salt Lake player to earn selection to the MLS All-Star team.
Prior selections include:
Kyle Beckerman (2007, 2009-2014, 2016)
Nick Rimando (2010-2015, 2019)
Jámison Olave (2010-2012)
Eddie Pope (2005, 2007)
Javier Morales (2009-2010)
Tony Beltran (2013, 2015)
Will Johnson (2009)
Fabián Espíndola (2012)
2021 MLS All-Star Game Roster by Position
Goalkeepers: Pedro Gallese (Orlando City SC), Matt Turner (New England Revolution)
Defenders: Julian Araujo (LA Galaxy), Jesus Murillo (LAFC), Nouhou Tolo (Seattle Sounders FC), Miles Robinson (Atlanta United), Alex Roldan (Seattle Sounders FC), James Sands (NYCFC), Kai Wagner (Philadelphia Union), Yeimar Gómez Andrade (Seattle Sounders FC), Walker Zimmerman (Nashville SC)
Midfielders: Eduard Atuesta (LAFC), Carles Gil (New England Revolution), Damir Kreilach (Real Salt Lake), João Paulo (Seattle Sounders FC), Emanuel Reynoso (Minnesota United FC), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders FC), Lucas Zelarayán (Columbus Crew)
Forwards: Gustavo Bou (New England Revolution), Tajon Buchanan (New England Revolution), Cade Cowell (San Jose Earthquakes), Javier "Chicharito" Hernández (LA Galaxy), Nani (Orlando City SC), Ricardo Pepi (FC Dallas), Diego Rossi (LAFC), Raúl Ruidíaz (Seattle Sounders FC), Daniel Salloi (Sporting Kansas City), Carlos Vela (LAFC)
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