Jimmy Nielsen wins 2012 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year

Jamie Squire

Sporting KC's Jimmy Nielsen becomes the first player from outside the CONCACAF region to be named MLS's top goalkeeper.

Jimmy Nielsen has been named the 2012 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year in a relative landslide. The Sporting Kansas City goalkeeper won all three voting blocs and garnered a weighted total of 146.33, about 115 points more than second place Dan Kennedy. The Dane also became the first player from outside the CONCACAF region to be named the league's top goalkeeper.

It was hard not to appreciate Nielsen's resume. Nielsen led the league with 15 shutouts and 18 wins and played all 3,060 minutes for East-leading Sporting Kansas City. He was also second in goals against average (.79) and fifth in save percentage (74).

Kennedy finished second despite allowing more goals than any other goalkeeper in the league and losing 17 games with Chivas USA. He also failed to crack the top 10 in goals against average or save percentage, but did finish second with 109 total saves.

Michael Gspurning, the other finalist, led the league in goals against average (.73), but was probably hurt by the fact that he only played in 24 matches due to injury.

Player (Club)

% of Club Votes

% of Media Votes

% of Player Votes

Weighted Total

Jimmy Nielsen (SKC)

49.12

70.77

26.44

146.33

Dan Kennedy (CHV)

12.28

3.08

14.94

30.30

Michael Gspurning (SEA)

12.28

4.61

11.49

28.38

Nick Rimando (RSL)

8.77

4.61

4.60

17.98

Andy Gruenebaum (CLB)

3.51

9.23

4.60

17.34

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