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FC Cincinnati's Matt Miazga named MLS Defender of the Year

FC Cincinnati/Major League Soccer

FC Cincinnati's Matt Miazga is the newest Major League Soccer Defender of the Year. The league-wide award was announced Monday.

Since joining the club in August 2022, he's started 37 regular-season matches and logged over 3,100 minutes.

This is the team's first league-wide individual award. Winners are determined by voting from journalists, technical staff and players themselves.

FC Cincinnati face the Philadelphia Union Saturday, Nov. 25 at TQL Stadium in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. Kick-off is at 8 p.m. Miazga, incidentally, will miss that match because he accumulated three yellow cards over two postseason matches. The winner of the single elimination match will move on to the Eastern Conference Final, the winner of which goes on to the MLS Cup Championship game.

RELATED: Cincinnati Planning Commission approves key parts of FC Cincinnati mixed-use district

Miazga and teammates Luciano Acosta and Álvaro Barreal were both named to the 2023 MLS All-Star team. Acosta and goalkeeper Roman Celantano were also nominated for league-wide awards, Acosta for MVP and Celentano for Goalkeeper of the Year. While Celentano didn't win, he did earn Save of the Year honors announced last week, and Acosta earned Goal of the Year. MVP hasn't yet been announced.

Head Coach Pat Noonan is also a finalist for MLS Coach of the Year. Under his leadership the team this season won the MLS Supporters' Shield — awarded for the best regular season record — and earned home field advantage during the MLS playoffs and — should FC Cincinnati advance to the final match — MLS Cup.

Senior Editor and reporter at WVXU with more than 20 years experience in public radio; formerly news and public affairs producer with WMUB. Would really like to meet your dog.