FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Four New England Revolution players were named to Major League Soccer’s 2021 Best XI as goalkeeper Matt Turner, midfielders Carles Gil and Tajon Buchanan, and forward Gustavo Bou were all among the elite performers to earn the prestigious honor. Claiming the Supporters’ Shield and the most points in MLS history, the New England Revolution’s placement of four players on the Best XI is a new club high and tied for the second most in league history (D.C. United: 1997, 2006; Chicago Fire FC: 1998, 2003; LA Galaxy: 2010, 2011) behind only the Miami Fusion’s five in 2001.
Today, Tuesday, December 2 at 5:00 p.m. ET, forward Gustavo Bou and goalkeeper Matt Turner will be available to media via video conference.
The Best XI – recognizing the league’s top players at each position as determined by media, MLS players, and MLS club technical staffs – represents eight nations and five clubs, with the Supporters’ Shield-winning Revolution’s four selections leading the way. The Revolution previously placed three players on the Best XI in 2005.
Gil, a 2021 Landon Donovan MLS MVP finalist and the 2021 MLS Comeback Player of the Year, earns his second MLS Best XI selection, having previously taken home the honor in 2019 after his debut season. This season, he captained the Revolution to an MLS-record 73 points as one of the league’s elite playmakers in the midfield. The Valencia, Spain native led MLS with 18 assists – one shy of tying New England’s club record – and recorded eight game-winning helpers to match a league mark. Gil also paced the league with 130 chances created, the most in a single season since the statistic has been tracked (since 2011). The Revolution were 12-1-3 in the 16 matches in which Gil recorded a goal or an assist.
CARLES GIL’S 2021 SEASON AT A GLANCE:
- Revolution Team MVP earned 2021 MLS Comeback Player of the Year honors and named as a finalist for the 2021 Landon Donovan MLS Most Valuable Player award
- Revs’ captain led MLS with 18 assists – one shy of the club record
- Logged 22 combined goals and assists – tied for ninth most in MLS – across 28 appearances
- Recorded 130 chances created, the most in a season since Opta began tracking the statistic in 2011
- Tied MLS single-season record with eight game-winning assists
- New England registered 12-1-3 record when Gil recorded a goal or an assist
- Named MLS Player of the Month for June, when he collected five assists in three starts,
- In May, signed a multi-year contract extension with New England through the 2024 season.
Bou makes his MLS Best XI debut after scoring 15 goals and nine assists on the year – tied for the fourth-most combined goals and assists in MLS during the 2021 campaign. He is the first Revolution player to make the Best XI as a forward since Taylor Twellman in 2005. The 2021 MLS All-Star was recognized for his blistering scoring pace with July’s MLS Player of the Month honors, when he scored five times across six games. From Sept. 22 through Oct. 24, Bou found the scoresheet in six consecutive games tallying three goals and five assists during New England’s 10-match unbeaten streak. Bou also enjoyed a five-game scoring streak from May 22 to July 3.
Bou’s scoring rates continue to place him in elite company. The Argentinian’s mark of 0.47 goals per game ranks second in club history, while his rate of 0.54 goals per 90 minutes played is tied with Adam Buksa for second in club annals behind Taylor Twellman. Bou's 32 goals across the regular season and playoffs since joining New England are tied for second-most in MLS dating back to his debut on July 17, 2019.
GUSTAVO BOU’S 2021 SEASON AT A GLANCE:
- Ranked tied for ninth in MLS in goals (15) and logged nine assists, both career bests, over 30 games.
- Selected to the MLS Best XI and 2021 MLS All Star roster for the first time.
- Tied for fourth-most combined goals and assists and led all MLS forwards in chances created (63)
- Voted MLS Player of the Month for July when he tallied five goals and one assist in six games
- New England posted a 10-1-3 record when Bou scored goal and a 7-0-2 mark when he recorded an assist.
- Signed a two-year contract extension through the 2023 season on Nov. 9, 2021.
Buchanan, who also finished second in 2021 MLS Young Player of the Year voting, earns his first Best XI selection after finishing with career highs in games played (27), starts (19), goals (8), and assists (5). The owner of 16 caps with the Canada Men’s National Team, all coming in 2021, Buchanan was named the Best Young Player at the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup. After three MLS seasons with New England, the 22-year-old Canadian international will soon join Belgian first-division champions Club Brugge KV.
TAJON BUCHANAN’S 2021 SEASON AT A GLANCE:
- Netted eight goals and five assists in 27 games played, including 19 starts, all career highs.
- Collected 16 caps for the Canada Men’s National Team, tallying three goals and four assists while earning 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup Best Young Player and a Best XI selections.
- Scored in four consecutive MLS matches between August 14 and September 11.
- In 2021, New England posted a 7-0-1 record when Buchanan scored and a 3-0-2 record when he tallied an assist.
- Transferring to Club Brugge (Belgium) at the end of the 2021 season.
Turner, the 2021 Allstate MLS Goalkeeper of the Year, is the first Revolution goalkeeper ever to earn a Best XI selection. The sixth-year pro set a new Revolution club mark with 17 wins in the regular season, tied for the most by a goalkeeper this season. He recorded a 1.25 goals against average and 73.2 saves percentage over 28 starts, with five shutouts over the course of the season. His two penalty saves were tied for the second most in MLS this year. Turner was also the hero of the 2021 MLS All-Star Game presented by Target, earning the game’s Most Valuable Player award after stopping two attempts during the penalty shootouts as the MLS All-Stars defeated the LIGA MX All-Stars.
On the international stage, Turner emerged as one of the top goalkeepers for the U.S. Men’s National Team after making his international debut in January. He went 9-1-2 in 12 starts for the USA, including five shutouts in six games during the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup. Turner was named the tournament’s Best Goalkeeper and earned a Best XI nod en route to the Gold Cup title. He went on to start the first five U.S. games in the final round of Concacaf qualifying for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
MATT TURNER’S 2021 SEASON AT A GLANCE:
- 2021 Allstate MLS Goalkeeper of the Year set a new club record with 17 wins en route to the club’s first Supporters’ Shield title
- Logged career highs in starts (28), minutes played (2,520), wins (17), and saves (101) in sixth MLS season
- Led MLS in home wins with 11 and lost only once in 15 starts at Gillette Stadium
- Named the MVP of the 2021 MLS All-Star Game after denying two penalty kicks in the shootout win vs. LIGA MX All-Stars
- Earned 12 caps with the U.S. Men's National Team in 2021 and owns an 9-1-2 record with eight shutouts
- Named top goalkeeper and a Best XI selection in the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup, helping the United States win the tournament with five clean sheets in six appearances
2021 MLS Best XI
Goalkeeper: Matt Turner (New England Revolution)
Defenders: Yeimar Gómez (Seattle Sounders FC), Miles Robinson (Atlanta United), Walker Zimmerman (Nashville SC)
Midfielders: Tajon Buchanan (New England Revolution), Carles Gil (New England Revolution), Hany Mukhtar (Nashville SC), João Paulo (Seattle Sounders FC)
Forwards: Gustavo Bou (New England Revolution), Valentín Castellanos (New York City FC), Raúl Ruidíaz (Seattle Sounders FC)