MLS Team of the Week: Bradley Wright-Phillips the star performer

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Former Manchester City and Southampton striker Bradley Wright-Phillips was one of the leading stars of week 17 in MLS, scoring a brace for the New York Red Bulls.

In a week which saw the return of several of the stars of the USA World Cup squad, it was a free-scoring Englishman who stole the headlines again in MLS.

GK – Clint Irwin (Colorado Rapids)

The 25-year-old made seven saves in Friday’s 1-1 draw with the Columbus Crew, as his fine run of form between the sticks continues to turn heads.

RB – Steven Beitashour (Vancouver Whitecaps)

After failing to see the pitch during Iran’s World Cup campaign, Beitashour returned to the Whitecaps lineup to consolidate his reputation as one of the best right-backs in MLS, keeping out table-toppers Seattle to earn a 1-0 home win.

CB – Matt Hedges (FC Dallas)

In a scrappy 2-1 win over Philadelphia, it was primarily Hedges who made sure the opposition were restricted to just the one goal, with calls for the centre-back to earn national team recognition growing louder and louder after each outing.

CB – Carlos Bocanegra (Chivas USA)

The former USA captain’s leadership in defence saw Chivas record clean sheets in both of their games over the past week, with 1-0 wins over San Jose and Montreal pushing them off the bottom of the Western Conference.

LB – Jorge Villafana (Portland Timbers)

Having broken into the starting lineup over the past couple of months, Villafana had an impactful performance in his side’s 2-2 draw with LA, helping to set up their first goal before scoring what looked to be the game-winner himself on 70 minutes, until a late equaliser saw the points shared.

RM – Nick DeLeon (D.C. United)

The star performer in United’s 2-1 over the Jermain Defoe-led Toronto, DeLeon was his team’s leading creative light, opening the scoring on the hour mark to spur them on to their eighth win of the season.

CM – Pedro Morales (Vancouver Whitecaps)

The Chilean playmaker is certainly proving worth the DP money Vancouver shelled out for him earlier this season, pulling the strings in the midfield to setup up his side’s lone goal in their 1-0 win over Seattle.

CM – Mathias Laba (Vancouver Whitecaps)

While his teammate Morales led things on the creative end, Laba’s performance in the holding role was just as praiseworthy, reading the game flawlessly to ensure Seattle could get nothing going through the centre of the pitch.

LM – Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo)

Returning from the World Cup to give his underperforming side an immediate boost, the USA international proved a handful for the Red Bulls’ defence throughout their 2-2, dispatching a spot-kick eight minutes from time to seal a well-deserved point.

ST – Bradley Wright Phillips (New York Red Bulls)

Another brace for the Englishman in the 2-2 draw with Houston saw him take sole lead of the league’s goalscoring charts, with 14 so far this season, as his strike partnership with Thierry Henry continues to bear fruit.

ST – Erick Torres (Chivas USA)

The young Mexican has been on a tear recently, scoring in four consecutive games, including a bicycle-kick winner in the fourth minute of stoppage time to dispatch Montreal 1-0 on the weekend.

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