Nigel Reo-Coker named finalist for 2013 MLS Newcomer of the Year award

Whitecaps FC also among finalists for Xbox Team Fair Play award

Nigel Reo-Coker run vs. SKC

Photo Credit: 
USA Today Sports Images

VANCOUVER, BC – Major League Soccer announced today that Vancouver Whitecaps FC midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker is one of three finalists for the 2013 MLS Newcomer of the Year award. It was also announced that Whitecaps FC have been nominated for the Xbox Team Fair Play award.

Reo-Coker, 29, joined Whitecaps FC on February 21, 2013, following a decade of playing experience at the highest levels in England. The native of London, England, was consistently one of Vancouver’s most influential players this past season, leading the team in minutes played with 2,817, starting 31 of 32 appearances, and contributing offensively with one goal and four assists. In addition, the 5-foot-9, 170-pound midfielder achieved a passing accuracy of nearly 82 per cent and was among the top 10 in the league for most passes and most passes in the opposition half.

"Reo-Coker brought a measure of stability and leadership to our team following the loss of Jay DeMerit, our captain, to injury in the opening game of the season," said Whitecaps FC president Bob Lenarduzzi. "Not only did he wear the captain’s armband when called upon, his ability to drive the play forward from midfield and slot in at right back when necessary was also invaluable throughout the season."

One of Reo-Coker’s most notable performances this season came on August 10 in a dominant home triumph over San Jose Earthquakes, when he distributed two of his four assists on the season and received one of his four Budweiser Man of the Match honours.

In addition to the Englishman, New England Revolution defender Jose Goncalves and Portland Timbers midfielder Diego Valeri were also named finalists for the Newcomer of the Year award, which is handed out to a player who has professional experience in another league and had an outstanding first season in MLS.

The finalists were determined by votes from current MLS players, MLS club technical staffs and front offices, as well as media members who covered the league regularly in 2013. The winner will be revealed on December 4.

Whitecaps FC were also named as one of the three finalists for the Xbox Team Fair Play award, alongside Houston Dynamo and LA Galaxy. The finalists were selected by MLS based on objective criteria such as fewest fouls committed, cards received, and on subjective evaluation of sportsmanlike behavior.

Vancouver made a massive turnaround from last season to earn the nomination. In 2012, the Blue and White committed the most fouls in MLS with 481. This season, however, the ‘Caps nearly committed 100 fewer fouls in 2013 for a total of 387, which was the fourth lowest in MLS. Additionally, only five teams received fewer cautions than Whitecaps FC (46) and D.C. United was the only team with fewer ejections. The 'Caps were one of four teams who had just one.

The winner of the Xbox Team Fair Play award will be announced on November 25.

2013 Major League Soccer Awards Finalists
(Listed in alphabetical order by last name within each award category)
AT&T Rookie of the Year Finalists
Deshorn Brown (Colorado Rapids)
Dillon Powers (Colorado Rapids)
DeAndre Yedlin (Seattle Sounders FC)

Xbox Individual Fair Play Finalists*
Jalil Anibaba (Chicago Fire)
Nat Borchers (Real Salt Lake)
Darlington Nagbe (Portland Timbers)

*Selected by MLS based on objective criteria such as fouls committed, cards received, games & minutes played, as well as subjective evaluation of sportsmanlike behavior.
Xbox Team Fair Play Finalists*
Houston Dynamo
LA Galaxy
Vancouver Whitecaps FC

*Selected by MLS based on objective criteria such as fewest fouls committed, cards received, and on subjective evaluation of sportsmanlike behavior.

Defender of the Year Finalists
Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City)
Jose Goncalves (New England Revolution)
Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy)

MLS WORKS Humanitarian of the Year Finalists
Jeb Brovsky (Montreal Impact)
Dwayne De Rosario (D.C. United)
Matt Reis (New England Revolution)

Referee of the Year Finalists
Ismail Elfath
Hilario Grajeda
Baldomero Toledo

Assistant Referee of the Year Finalists
Frank Anderson
Bill Dittmar
Kermit Quisenberry

Coach of the Year Finalists
Jason Kreis (Real Salt Lake)
Mike Petke (New York Red Bulls)
Caleb Porter (Portland Timbers)

Comeback Player of the Year Finalists
Kevin Alston (New England Revolution)
Conor Casey (Philadelphia Union)
Lamar Neagle (Seattle Sounders FC)

Allstate Goalkeeper of the Year Finalists
Jimmy Nielsen (Sporting Kansas City)
Donovan Ricketts (Portland Timbers)
Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)

Newcomer of the Year Finalists
Jose Goncalves (New England Revolution)
Nigel Reo-Coker (Vancouver Whitecaps FC)
Diego Valeri (Portland Timbers)

Volkswagen Most Valuable Player Finalists
Marco DiVaio (Montreal Impact)
Robbie Keane (LA Galaxy)
Mike Magee (Chicago Fire)

Awards Announcements Schedule: 
Schedule subject to change

November 25: AT&T Rookie of the Year, Xbox Fair Play Individual & Team of the Year
November 26: MLS Defender of the Year, MLS WORKS Humanitarian of the Year, and Referee/Assistant Referee of the Year
December 2: MLS Coach of the Year and Comeback Player of the Year
December 3: 2013 MLS Best XI
December 4: Allstate Goalkeeper of the Year and Newcomer of the Year
December 5: AT&T Goal of the Year, MLS Save of the Year and Volkswagen MLS MVP

Whitecaps FC 2014 season tickets are now on sale and start at just $349, subject to applicable fees. The club is also offering a flexible range of additional products, including half-season packs, 5-packs, student season tickets, and a youth soccer half-season ticket. For more information on all Whitecaps FC ticket options, call 604.669.9283 ext. 2 or visit whitecapsfc.com/tickets.