Aaron Long Named 2016 USL Defender of the Year

IMAGE, MATT KREMKAU FOR EMPIRE OF SOCCER

by ANTHONY J. MERCED

New York Red Bull II’s Aaron Long has won the award for 2016 USL Defender of the Year.

Long’s contributions greatly contributed to NYRB II’s USL Championship winning season and also helped in setting the record for least goals-conceded in a USL season.

“This year’s been my first primarily at center back or just in any one position for a full year,” said Long. “The leaders have taken me under their wing from the first team, I’ve gotten a lot of help from people.” Long played in 22 games for New York Red Bull II and earned himself a first team call-up during the CONCACAF Champions League group stage. He also played an entire season with Seattle Sounders FC 2 in 2015 as a defensive midfielder.

Long was an important part of his team’s record breaking defensive season. The team was just one shutout shy of tying the all-time record for USL.

2016 USL AWARDS:

Goalkeeper of the Year: Mitch Hildebrandt (FC Cincinnati)
Defender of the Year: Aaron Long (NYRB II)
Coach of the Year: TBA on Nov. 2
Rookie of the Year: TBA on Nov. 3
Most Valuable Player: TBA on Nov. 4