Player of the Week

Player of the Week: Brian Carroll

Photo: Michael Long

In a season where too many weeks have had the PSP writers scratching our heads because no one seems to deserve it, it’s nice to have a performance that provides multiple candidates for the Player of the Week award. Wednesday’s win over the hapless Columbus Crew was so complete—so dominant—that any number of Union players could have been selected. In the end, it was the man whose long-range strike opened the scoring, and whose defensive presence ensured that one goal was all that was needed (though no one’s complaining about the other two): Brian Carroll.

Carroll, perhaps more than any other Union player, divides opinion. A ten-year veteran of the league and a proven winner, 2012 was the first in his career that didn’t end with a trip to the playoffs. A quiet man who leads by example more than by shouting, he was perhaps not an obvious choice for the captaincy, but on a young team stripped of many of its veterans, his experience was and is valuable.

And yet, Carroll’s critics would say he’s a bit of a dinosaur. Clearly uncomfortable with the modern double-pivot midfield setup of two deep-lying midfielders, and lacking much in the way of an offensive skill-set, some have claimed the game has passed Carroll by. He’s a throwback, they say, and not in a good way.

Whether or not that’s true, Wednesday’s game showed that Carroll still has it in him to own a game. Against Columbus, he shielded the back four, stepped into passing lanes, broke up attacks with timely tackles, and—biting his thumb at his critics—found the time to mosey his way up field, make a hard cut past a defender, and score the game winner. A churl might grouse and say the goal was aided greatly by a deflection, but let nothing take away from the quality of Carroll’s game, or his contributions to the Union’s win.

Against Columbus, Brian Carroll proved that, under the right circumstances, he is still very, very good at his job. That’s why he’s PSP’s Player of the Week.

Honorable Mention: Sébastien Le Toux

Brian Carroll aside, there’s one man who contributed more than any other Union player to the defeat of Columbus, and that’s Le Toux. While he has stated on multiple occasions that he prefers to play up front, Le Toux’s willingness to subjugate his own desires for the good of the team by playing out wide has allowed Jack McInerney and Conor Casey to thrive, while providing more incisive and attacking wing play than the Union have otherwise been able to generate. It’s also driven him to the top of the MLS assist table. Le Toux added two more to his tally against the Crew, including providing the ball for Conor Casey’s thunderous headed finish. More than that, Le Toux’s all-action effort set the tone for the whole Union team.


  1. *Monocle pop out* A churl? Why you are nothing but a reprobate and an Odious,Droning Fop!

  2. LeToux has been the spark that ignites the Union offense all season. He has demonstrated his skills well enough that Jack Mac has taken up doing the same type of team play to up his game. As for the player of the week…BC has been up and down this season but mostly up…he plays hard every game and finally got the benefit. Also Keon played well so Carroll didn’t have to play two positions. Congrats to BC for a well deserved POTW nod!

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