Today it was announced that two members of MLS’s Cascadia Cup rivalry were named to the MLS All-Star team’s 26-man roster. Sounders midfielder Nicolás Lodeiro and Timbers midfielder Diego Chara will both take part in the game, which will feature MLS stars taking on Atlético Madrid in Orlando on Wednesday, July 31. Both players were chosen for the game by head coach James O’Connor of Orlando City FC. Both will be making their first All-Star appearance. Below are excerpts from the respective teams’ press releases.
Lodeiro has started all 14 of his appearances this season and is currently tied for fourth in MLS with eight assists, to go along with two goals. His 56 fouls suffered and 85 corner kicks lead MLS for the 2019 season, while his 1,326 touches rank fourth and his 99 duels won rank 15th. Last season, Lodeiro established a new single-season club record with 16 assists, in addition to a career-high eight goals. His 44 career MLS assists are the most in club history and rank first in MLS since Lodeiro entered the league in July of 2016. Currently with Uruguay at the 2019 Copa América, Lodeiro has started both matches for La Celeste and scored the opening goal in a 4-0 win over Ecuador on June 16.
Chara is among the 26 MLS players selected to compete against La Liga side Atlético de Madrid at Exploria Stadium in Orlando, Fla., on Wednesday, July 31, at 5 p.m. (Pacific), live on FS1, UniMás, TSN and TVA Sports. Today’s announcement included 13 selections – including Chara – by MLS All-Star head coach James O’Connor, players from the previously announced MLS All-Star Fan XI presented by Target and two Commissioner’s picks. The announcement marks the first time Chara, who originally signed with the Timbers for their inaugural MLS season in 2011, has been named to the MLS All-Star roster.
2019 MLS ALL-STAR GAME ROSTER BY POSITION
GOALKEEPERS: Andre Blake* (Philadelphia Union), Brad Guzan^ (Atlanta United), Nick Rimando# (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS: Matt Hedges* (FC Dallas), Kemar Lawrence* (New York Red Bulls), Romain Métanire* (Minnesota United FC), Leandro González Pírez^ (Atlanta United), Bastian Schweinsteiger* (Chicago Fire), Walker Zimmerman^ (Los Angeles Football Club), Graham Zusi^ (Sporting Kansas City)
MIDFIELDERS: Ezequiel Barco^ (Atlanta United), Diego Chara* (Portland Timbers), Jonathan dos Santos^ (LA Galaxy), Mark-Anthony Kaye* (Los Angeles Football Club), Nicolás Lodeiro* (Seattle Sounders FC), Gonzalo “Pity” Martínez^ (Atlanta United), Maxi Moralez* (NYCFC), Nani^ (Orlando City SC), Paxton Pomykal# (FC Dallas), Alejandro Pozuelo* (Toronto FC), Diego Rossi* (Los Angeles Football Club)
FORWARDS: Zlatan Ibrahimović^ (LA Galaxy – EA SPORTS™ “More Than a Vote” Challenge), Josef Martínez* (Atlanta United), Wayne Rooney^ (D.C. United), Chris Wondolowski* (San Jose Earthquakes), Carlos Vela^ (Los Angeles Football Club)
^Fan XI selection
*James O’Connor selection
#Commissioner Don Garber selection