Team of the Week presented by Audi: Mukhtar continues MVP case, Carranza dominates in Week 26
A masterclass performance from Nashville SC star Hany Mukhtar and another five-star showing from Philadelphia Union striker Julian Carranza were among Week 26’s highlights, headlining the MLS Team of the Week presented by Audi.
Mukhtar had two goals and one assist in a 4-0 drubbing of FC Dallas, bringing him tied with Austin FC’s Sebastian Driussi for the MLS lead in combined goal contributions (25). Meanwhile, Carranza had a hat trick and assist in a 6-0 victory over D.C. United that continued the Argentine’s individual dominance against the Black-and-Red.
Up top, Carranza is joined by Sporting Kansas City’s William Agada and CF Montréal’s Romell Quioto. Agada had two goals and one assist in a 4-1 win over the Portland Timbers, continuing his transformative impact since joining SKC this summer. Quioto had two goals and one assist as well, powering Montréal to a 4-0 rout of the New England Revolution.
The midfield trio is rounded out by Minnesota United FC’s Emanuel Reynoso and Vancouver Whitecaps FC’s Ryan Gauld. Reynoso’s penalty kick and chance-creating clinic paced a huge 2-1 win over Austin FC, while Gauld had two goals and an assist across a four-point week for Vancouver as they chase an Audi MLS Cup Playoffs spot.
New York Red Bulls left back John Tolkin had the game-winner in a 2-1 win at Atlanta United midweek, then continued his steady-as-you-like form in a 1-1 tie with FC Cincinnati. That latter matchup also produced a TotW spot for new Cincy center back Matt Miazga, whose hour-plus run-out included the opener in his second appearance in Orange & Blue – coming against his former (and hometown) team.
The right back spot goes to Tommy Thompson of the San Jose Earthquakes after he provided two assists in a 2-1 win over Supporters’ Shield-leading LAFC on his birthday. Damion Lowe earns the other center-back spot after the Inter Miami CF defender was dominant in a 2-1 win over Toronto FC and notched an assist.
Vancouver’s Thomas Hasal gets the nod at goalkeeper following a six-save week across two games – with several stunning stops included. Overseeing it all is Adrian Heath, as his Minnesota side beat Austin in statement-like fashion to move within striking distance of third in the Western Conference table.
Team of the Week (4-3-3, left to right): Thomas Hasal (VAN) – John Tolkin (RBNY), Matt Miazga (CIN), Damion Lowe (MIA), Tommy Thompson (SJ) – Hany Mukhtar (NSH), Emanuel Reynoso (MIN), Ryan Gauld (VAN) – William Agada (SKC), Julian Carranza (PHI), Romell Quioto (MTL)
Coach: Adrian Heath (MIN)
Bench: John Pulskamp (SKC), Domenico Criscito (TOR), Cesar Araujo (ORL), Santiago Rodriguez (NYC), Kwadwo Opoku (LAFC), Cucho Hernandez (CLB), Raul Ruidiaz (SEA)
Audi Goals Drive Progress
MLS Academies have been identified as one of the most important resources for building on-field talent in North America. Through the Audi Goals Drive Progress initiative, Audi has committed $1 million per season in an effort to advance academies league-wide, and to drive progress for the sport. For every goal scored in the regular season, Audi will contribute $500 into the Audi Goals Drive Progress fund to directly support each MLS Club Youth Academy.