1) Osvaldo Alonso
Alonso had his best season yet in a Sounders’ jersey, starting 32 games, scoring three goals and even adding a career-high four assists to his peerless work rate in the middle of the park. In fact, there have been some calls for him to be considered for MLS MVP.
Regardless, the 30-year old still has a lot to prove for the Sounders. With injuries sidelining him during the playoffs the two previous seasons, he has yet to truly leave his mark in Seattle when the stakes are raised.
Predictably, the last two years also raised questions about Alonso’s durability, probably not helped by his tenacious style of play leaving him susceptible to injury. However, this year’s been different, as he has worked closely with Director of Performance & Sports Science Dave Tenney, to improve his health and fitness.
Speaking to the media earlier this week, the San Cristóbal, Cuba native said: “I feel good – physically and mentally, I’m ready to go.” This will be music to the ears as Sounders’ fans, as they look for their team to finally reach the promised land.