NYCFC’s Villa, Lampard To MLS All-Star Game; No Red Bulls voted in

IMAGE, MCFC.COM

It looks like New York City FC have quite a few fans — including one in the Commissioner’s office.

The MLS All-Star XI fan vote was revealed prior to Tuesday evening’s U.S. Men’s National Team Gold Cup encounter against Panama, with NYCFC striker David Villa earning a fitting place in the first team.

More surprising, however, was the Commissioner’s Pick, where MLS boss Don Garber awarded an All-Star spot to none other than Steven Gerrard — and Frank Lampard.

Traditionally, All Star games select players of high merit to represent the league. In the case of Villa, he is, without question, a deserving invitee. After all, the Spanish legend has been the engine of the NYCFC offense, leading his team in goals (10) and assists (3).

The Commissioner’s Pick is intended to balance out the roster with deserving players who could not garner votes in the “popularity contest” that is the fan vote. For instance, leading goal scorers Kei Kamara and Giovinco did not make the fan cut.

Lampard, however, has not played a single match this MLS season, and still received the nod from Garber. In fact, his MLS affiliation has best been defined by controversy and letdowns instead of promise and hope. The former Chelsea legend was announced as part of NYCFC back in August 3rd of last season. Days later, plans were revealed to “loan” the player to Manchester City to remain fit for the MLS campaign. A dazzling start to his City tenure forced the question of where he would commit to play ahead of the winter transfer window. With NYCFC starting camp in January, it was assumed his parent club would call him back.

But they didn’t. They couldn’t. NYCFC was never the parent club — and a loan did not exist. Instead, Lampard was signed to City all along — and stuck with Manchester through the 2014-15 campaign. Now free of his English obligations, his much anticipated debut on Sunday against Toronto was derailed due to injury — and his status against New England this week is up in the air.

Meanwhile across the river, the New York Red Bulls — currently second in the Eastern Conference — did not manage a single All Star selection despite several worthy players such as Bradley Wright-Phillips, Luis Robles, Dax McCarty and Lloyd Sam eligible for vote. Colorado Rapids and MLS All-Star head coach Pablo Mastroeni will round out the vote to 22 players, which will be announced this Saturday.

Here is the full MLS starting XI:

2015 MLS All-Star Fan XI:

STRIKERS (3):
Clint Dempsey, Obafemi Martins, David Villa
MIDFIELDERS (6):
Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard, Kaka, Michael Bradley, Benny Feilhaber, Graham Zusi
DEFENDERS (3):
Matt Besler, Omar Gonzalez, DeMarcus Beasley
GOALKEEPER (1):
Nick Rimando

  • Nobby Stiles

    A Complete Joke. Garber has got to go

  • Johnny Feelgood

    Lampard is so hip. What a great choice! I’ll be wearing my Lampard jersey, drinking PBR and smoking some ironic Euro cigarettes. I love Brooklyn !

    • Bushwick Bill

      Lampard is so hip that he’s going to sent a youtube video of his best goals to the game in his place so he can eat at pan-asian noodle house on Bedford Avenue.

      • Astoria Neckbeard

        Is it farm-to table?

        • Johnny Feelgood

          Not sure, but it better be all organic.

          • slowleftarm

            This dude’s shtick is pretty old.

            • Bill Bushwick

              It is organic, local, farm to table and alternative and hip.

  • Ruse

    No,seriously…..it realy ,really,really,really is a serious first class league. HAHAHAHAHA……and the rest of the world continues to laugh…

  • mike q

    MLS is not a 1st class league yet if the definition of 1st class is top 5 leagues in the world, but it will be in 10 yrs if the current growth continues, having Lampard in is just more marketing, but that is what will increase revenue for the future!

  • Resguard

    This is bad, how can you be an all-star without even playing, shouldn’t the all-stars be the players with the highest stats… Idk… this makes no sense…

    • Ulrich

      Haha, everybody gets so wound up so quickly….

      If the fans are voting on the “All-stars”, it’s not a roster based on stats but rather popularity – players that the fans like and are interested in watching. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure that out. Since Giovinco & Kamara are both forwards and they were out-voted by 2 forwards from Seattle (highest fans per game) and 1 from NYCFC (3rd highest fans per game), it’s not surprising that Kamara and Giovinco couldn’t garner enough votes from their respective fan-bases.

      There are still additional roster spots to be filled by the coach, so Giovinco & Kamara will most likely be selected.

      • Kevin

        There’s no defending it…yes,it’s a popularity contest. They all are. But don’t tell me u guys out there that are RB fans don’t feel slighted at all. Two guys who have barely stepped on American soil deserve to be on an all star team…come on.

      • Anthony

        News Flash, the vote is a combination of fan vote, media vote and players & coaches vote and its fairly evenly represented statistically. In case you missed it, none of those elements voted for Gerrard and Lampard…Garber just chose them himself and neither has even worn a set of boots for his team in a league game.

        • Ulrich

          The Commish has ALWAYS had his pet picks. Big deal. It’s two players out of 22, and the All-Star game is all about marketing the league, which in case you missed it means they want the viewership of the game to translate into figurative marketing dollars. Guys out there more deserving, like Lloyd Sam, aren’t going to draw viewers from England and abroad, but foreign viewers will definitely tune in for Gerrard and Lampard.

          But hey, if people want to complain, let them complain.

  • slowleftarm

    RBNY have enough meaningless games during this timeframe so it’s just as well none of their players are on the roster.

    • Kevin

      But slow left arm, ur an RB fan this doesn’t annoy u. U have guys who deserve it.

      • slowleftarm

        Couldn’t care less. Why do I want Lloyd or Robles going out to Denver in the middle of the week? The fact guys who’ve never played an MLS game are on this roster shows it’s a meaningless designation anyway.

        • Anthony

          You might not care, but im sure their All star bonus check is something THEY would care about.

          • slowleftarm

            True. Assuming they get such a bonus. The previous poster asked if I cared and I don’t.

  • Kevin

    Guess you’re right,but still bothers me. I don’t know why. I just think fair is fair and these 2 haven’t played at all. There has to be 2 MLS player’s out there who didn’t get chosen, won’t get chosen and have played an All-Star type caliber season.

  • North Carolina inbreed

    Love the picture of Fat Frank in a Manchester City shirt. Lol! Or is it a NYCFC shirt? So confusing! Can’t tell the difference. Lol

  • WTF?

    Garber just set the league back 10 years. More and more I wanna say **** the MLS. I’ll just root for the Cosmos.

    • slowleftarm

      There are at least 3k people who feel the same way. And those are the only people who show up in Hempstead every week.

    • smurf040

      WTF, I’am with you. Garber has lost all clue on how to run this league. from the Minn U mess, to Beckham’s team, NYCfc Stadium fiasco and the decision to allow both NY MLS team to join the women’s parade to finally this. He’s got to go! Until then,,, Go CosmosIII

      • slowleftarm

        Plus he rejected Cosmos efforts to join MLS and finally become relevant. Your hatred of him probably has nothing to do with that though.

  • mike q

    root for the cosmos, what a waste that is! – they play on a turf lax field in long island and their league is 0-7 against USL teams.

    Support MLS where future US Nat players will be developed and the growth of US soccer will happen!

  • paul

    This is great! I’d rather not lose another player in a meaningless game. The only all star game sillier than MLS’ is The NFL’s.

  • smurf040

    Just when I thought we had a chance for the rest of the world to start taking us seriously, Garber pulls off this stunt! Are you kidding me??? If either Lampard or Gerard have any integrity, they would turn this gig down. Garber just told all the hard working players in his league who deserve recognition of an All star nod what he thinks about them. Shame on him and shame on any of you who support him on this decision. It’s a farce and a joke! I was disgusted with what NYCfc and the Redbulls pulled at USWNT”s ticker tape parade, but this takes the cake. Truly classless. It’s clear that the only NY team that “gets” it is the Cosmos!

    • slowleftarm

      The rest of the world doesn’t have all-star games and I doubt they care one iota about how Garber picked for this game.

      What’s “clear” is that you’ll use any opportunity to bash MLS to deflect attention from the Cosmos pathetic attendance.

      • Luis

        Slowleftarm you’re a fuckin sheep, plain and simple. Keep sucking that mls kool aid kiddo.

  • Johnny Feelgood

    Somebody please make a t-shirt of that pose of Frank.
    I need that on a shirt or even a poster.
    He’s the face of Soccer in America!

  • Nobby Stiles

    Rafa Marquez deserves to be picked also

  • Larry K

    The Atomic Ant has to be a starter.

  • Larry K

    De Marcus Beasley ? I think McCarty deserves it. I rather not have Sam go, injuries lately, needs the rest. Remember, the all star game is a show, not an actual game, so that is why Garber, who still is clueless, picked Lamps and Gerard. Can you imagine one of our NYRB players getting hurt, we are thin as it is.

  • Ruse

    BTW Galaxy just signed Dos Santos on a 4 year deal