Eddie Johnson Wins MLS Comeback of the Year Award


Eddie Johnson has overcome career frustration to have a superb 2012
Photo: Brandon Bleek

Sounders FC forward Eddie Johnson has capped a memorable year in MLS by scooping the MLS 2012 Comeback Player of the Year award announced today for the second time.

He won narrowly from DC United’s Chris Pontius with a weighted total of 94.73 to Pontius 83.74.

Johnson handily won both the journalists’ and the player’s portions of the vote but trailed the United midfielder among front office voters by a 2-1 margin.

Johnson also won the award in 2007 while a Kansas City player.

“I would like the entire Sounders organization for giving me this opportunity in Seattle,” said Johnson in a club press release.

“This was a fun and exciting year and I share this award with my coaches and teammates for pushing me to be the best player I can be.”

Alan Gordon of San Jose came in third in a year which saw him feature in a US international squad. Two players recovering from season long injuries in 2011, FC Dallas Davide Ferreira and Sounders FC’s Steve Zakuani came in fourth and fifth.

Sigi Schmid finishes 5th in Coach of the Year

MLS Release:

2012 Comeback Player of the Year: Eddie Johnson – Seattle Sounders FC

After struggling to find consistency for three years playing in Europe, Eddie Johnson returned to Major League Soccer to join Seattle Sounders FC ahead of the 2012 season. The move resurrected Johnson’s career for both club and country.

Johnson regained his form this season, scoring 14 goals and recording three assists in 28 games played to help the Sounders FC reach the MLS Cup playoffs for the fourth consecutive year. In October, Johnson received his first United States national team call up since May 2010. He scored two decisive goals against Antigua and Barbuda, which propelled the U.S. into the hexagonal round of World Cup Qualifying.

This is Eddie Johnson’s second Comeback Player of the Year award. He previously received the honor in 2007 when he scored 15 goals for the Kansas City Wizards after only scoring twice in the season prior.

The award was voted on by media, MLS players and MLS club management based on regular season performance. The other two finalists were D.C United midfielder Chris Pontius and San Jose Earthquakes forward Alan Gordon. Below is a breakdown of the voting for the top five candidates:


Player (Club) % of Club Votes % of Media Votes % of Player Votes Weighted Total
Eddie Johnson (SEA) 22.81 37.88 34.04 94.73
Chris Pontius (DC) 40.35 24.24 19.15 83.74
Alan Gordon (SJ) 10.53 13.64 9.57 33.74
David Ferreira (DAL) 5.26 9.09 6.38 20.73
Steve Zakuani (SEA) 3.51 6.06 7.45 17.02

MLS Comeback Player of the Year Winners:

2012: Eddie Johnson – Seattle Sounders FC

2011: David Beckham – Los Angeles Galaxy

2010: Bobby Convey – San Jose Earthquakes

2009: Zach Thornton – Chivas USA

2008: Kenny Cooper – FC Dallas

2007: Eddie Johnson – Kansas City Wizards

2006: Richard Mulrooney – FC Dallas

2005: Chris Klein – Kansas City Wizards

2004: Brian Ching – San Jose Earthquakes

2003: Chris Armas – Chicago Fire

2002: Chris Klein – Kansas City Wizards

2001: Troy Dayak – San Jose Earthquakes

2000: Tony Meola – Kansas City Wizards


About Author

Steve is the founder and owner of Prost Amerika. He covered the expansion of MLS soccer in Cascadia at first hand. As Editor in Chief of soccerly.com, he was accredited at the 2014 World Cup Final. He is the former President of the North American Soccer Reporters Association/ Originally from Glasgow, he is a supporter of the Great Glasgow Alternative, Partick Thistle.

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