| Tuesday, October 8, 2002 18:52 EST
Donovan named Player of the Year
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. -- Landon Donovan was selected Honda
Player of the Year on Tuesday after leading the U.S. team to the
quarterfinals of the World Cup.
The 20-year-old forward-midfielder received 497 points --
including 74 first-place votes -- in balloting by 277 U.S.
journalists who cover soccer.
``I feel bad, like the young guy shouldn't win,'' Donovan said
after the presentation at the Beverly Hilton hotel.
``I'm really astonished,'' said Donovan, who received a new car
and a trophy.
Brad Friedel finished second with 382 points, and Claudio Reyna,
who won the award in 2000, was third with 274 points.
Donovan became the youngest winner of the 12-year-old award,
which goes to a member of the U.S. national team.
``What are you, 10?'' Friedel jokingly asked Donovan. ``It's
great for such a young player to win an award like this, especially
since he plays in the United States where everyone can see him week
in and week out.''
Donovan plays for Major League Soccer's San Jose Earthquakes and
helped lead them to the 2001 MLS championship in his first season
with the team.
He scored two goals at the World Cup, which ended for the United
States with a 1-0 loss to Germany. Overall, Donovan scored six
goals this year for the American team.
``You can make a case for Brad or Claudio or a lot of guys on
our team,'' Donovan said. ``I hope I have many years where I can be
nominated and I hope they do too, but maybe not, so that's why I
Friedel, 31, played every minute of every game in goal during
the World Cup. The former UCLA player traveled from England, where
he plays in the Premier League, to attend the ceremony.
``Landon is going to have a tremendous career ahead of him,''
Reyna, 29, participated by telephone from England, where his
wife is about to give birth to their second child. He is a