Nov. 13, 2008
NORTHRIDGE, Calif. -
Major League Soccer announced on Thursday that Los Angeles Galaxy defender Sean Franklin has been named the Gatorade 2008 Rookie of the Year. Other rookies nominated for the award included Houston Dynamo midfielder Geoff Cameron, and New England Revolution forward Kheli Dube.
“Being nominated for one of the three finalists was exciting enough on its own. But when I found out that I won the award, I was excited to receive such an honor," stated Franklin in a telephone interview. "All I wanted to accomplish this season was play hard enough, and practice well enough to be able to earn a spot in a professional game."
In his inaugural season as a professional, the 23-year old native from Palmdale, Calif. led all rookies in games played (27), games started (26), and minutes played (2,385), while also picking up one assist for the Galaxy this past season.
After graduating from Cal State Northridge last year, the Galaxy selected Franklin with the #4 pick in the 2008 MLS SuperDraft, the team's highest draft pick since the 2003 season.
In addition to becoming the first Galaxy player to win Rookie of the Year honors, the former Matador was informed on Tuesday that he was one of a handful of individuals who was named to the U.S. National Team training camp roster.
"Sean is one of those guys who just wanted to be the best on the field. He had a work ethic that was contagious, and always strived to not only exceed the expectations of others, but his own as well. I consider myself lucky to have had the opportunity to coach Sean, and know that he will continue represent both the Galaxy and U.S. Soccer in a first-class manner throughout his career." stated Terry Davila, Head Coach for the Men's Soccer program at Cal State Northridge.
This is the first time in his career that Franklin has been called up to participate with the National Team; training camp will take place at Dick's Sporting Goods Park located in Denver, Colorado.
Having played previously for the U.S. Under-20 and Under-23 National Teams, Franklin is one of 19 invitees who has the potential to be named to the squad that will face Guatemala in a 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying match on November 19 at the same facility.
"The sky is the limit for Sean," said Davila. "This couldn't have happened to a better person."
U.S. MEN'S NATIONAL TEAM TRAINING CAMP ROSTER
GOALKEEPERS (3): Brian Edwards (Toronto FC), Troy Perkins (Valerenga IF), Matt Pickens (out of contract)
DEFENDERS (6): Jonathan Bornstein (Chivas USA), Sean Franklin (Los Angeles Galaxy), Cory Gibbs (Colorado Rapids), Clarence Goodson (IK Start), Drew Moor (FC Dallas), Michael Parkhurst (New England Revolution)
MIDFIELDERS (5): Colin Clark (Colorado Rapids), Ricardo Clark (Houston Dynamo), Sacha Kljestan (Chivas USA), Nick LaBrocca (Colorado Rapids), Pablo Mastroeni (Colorado Rapids)
FORWARDS (5): Davy Arnaud (Kansas City Wizards), Chad Barrett (Toronto FC), Conor Casey (Colorado Rapids), Brian Ching (Houston Dynamo), Kenny Cooper (FC Dallas)