Goncalves voted MLS Defender of the Year

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – New England Revolution defender Jose Goncalves (pronounced joe-SAY gon-SAHL-ves) was voted the 2013 MLS Defender of the Year today, following a season in which he anchored one of the league’s top defenses and helped the Revs return to the MLS Cup Playoffs for the first time in four seasons.

Goncalves, 28, joined the Revolution in January from Swiss club FC Sion on loan before the Revs purchased him and permanently transferred him to New England last week.

The central defender was named club captain in early May and started all 34 games this season, playing every minute of every game – one of only three field players in the league to do so.

Goncalves helped anchor the Revs’ defense that was among the top defensive corps all season, and which finished the year tied for third-best in the league with a 1.12 goals against average. One season after allowing 44 goals (1.29 goals against average) in 2012, the Revolution allowed just 38 goals and posted a club-record 14 shutouts in 2013.

Goncalves also added two crucial goals, both game-winners: at Columbus in stoppage time on July 20 in a 2-0 win and at Montreal in a 1-0 win on Oct. 12.

“We’re very pleased that players, clubs and media around MLS recognized the fantastic season-long influence Jose Goncalves had this year,” Revolution General Manager Michael Burns said. “Jose has been a great addition to our club and this award recognizes the impact he’s had on the field for us. The fact that he was also selected as team captain shortly after his arrival is further testament to his personality and leadership.”

“I’m very honored to be recognized by Major League Soccer with this major award,” Goncalves said. “I have many people to thank including my family, teammates, the fans and the Club, because without them, this award wouldn’t be mine.”

The MLS defender of the year is determined through league-wide voting of players, media and executive staff. Goncalves is the Revolution’s second defender of the year award winner as former defender Michael Parkhurst (2005-08) was the 2007 award winner.

PLAYER % Club Votes % Media Votes % Player Votes WEIGHTED TOTAL
1. José Gonçalves (NE) 36.74 46.75 18.83 102.32
2. Matt Besler (SKC) 14.29 27.27 13.75 55.31
3. Omar Gonzalez (LA) 18.37 7.79 15.07 41.23
4. Jámison Olave (NY) 10.2 11.69 13.18 35.07