Sporting KC’s Pulido named a finalist for 2020 MLS Newcomer of the Year

Alan Pulido had six goals and five assists to lead Sporting KC in the regular season.
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Alan Pulido‘s brilliant first season with Sporting Kansas City has been recognized by Major League Soccer, which named him a finalist for the 2020 MLS Newcomer of the Year award.

Pulido, 29, was nominated along with Chicago Fire FC forward Robert Beric and Columbus Crew SC midfielder Lucas Zelarayan, based on voting among MLS players, coaches and technical directors as well as select media members representing local and national outlets.

The striker from Mexico joined Sporting KC last December on a club-record transfer fee from Liga MX side Chivas de Guadalajara. He finished the regular season with six goals and five assists, both team highs, in 12 appearances. He leads MLS newcomers and ranks third overall with 0.92 combined goals and assists per game. Pulido is the first player to lead Sporting in both goals and assists since Josh Wolff in 2005, and the first newcomer to do so since Preki in 1996, MLS’ inaugural season.

Pulido also scored a goal in the quarterfinals of the MLS is Back Tournament, a game that did not count in the regular-season standings.

Sporting went 8-2-1 and averaged 2.27 goals in the 11 regular-season matches that Pulido started, helping the club finish atop the Western Conference standings with a 12-6-3 record and 1.86 points per match. An injury sidelined Pulido for almost a month, and he also missed time with Sporting while playing two matches with the Mexico Men’s National Team.