Having one of the best defenses in MLS history apparently won a lot of favor from voters for the league's Best XI. Sporting Kansas City, which allowed just 27 goals and posted 15 shutouts, occupied three of the four primarily defensive spots on the team, with San Jose Earthquakes center back Victor Bernardez being the lone exception.
Jimmy Nielsen was named the Best XI goalkeeper and center backs Matt Besler and Aurilien Collin made the team as well. Just for good measure, midfielder Graham Zusi also made the team after leading the league with 15 assists.
Landon Donovan, Thierry Henry and Chris Wondolowski were the only players named to this year's team that were also among the 2011 Best XI. Chris Pontius, Osvaldo Alonso and Robbie Keane filled out the squad.
Goalkeeper - Jimmy Nielsen (Sporting Kansas City)
Defender - Victor Bernardez (San Jose Earthquakes)
Defender - Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City)
Defender - Aurelien Collin (Sporting Kansas City)
Midfielder - Osvaldo Alonso (Seattle Sounders FC)
Midfielder - Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy)
Midfielder - Chris Pontius (D.C. United)
Midfielder - Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
Forward - Thierry Henry (New York Red Bulls)
Forward - Robbie Keane (LA Galaxy)
Forward - Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)