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Donovan Ricketts is the Goalkeeper of the Year

The Timbers' keeper edged out Nick Rimando as the top net-minder in MLS.

Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Spor

Donovan Ricketts had a big year in 2013. His 92 saves were a new personal best, as were his 14 shutouts which lead the league.

It was a far cry from the disastrous 2012 season that saw him leave a dysfunctional Montreal Impact side, where he allowed 39 goals in 24 games, and arrive with the then-dysfunctional Portland Timbers, allowing 13 goals in 9 games.

The turnaround has seen Ricketts change from the poster-boy for an ineffective front office to the wily veteran who has kept the team in games time and time again, as his ten Save of the Week nominations (one of which has been nominated for the Save of the Year) can attest.

In 2012 he was called "Rickety Crickett". In 2013 his nicknames have been somewhat more complimentary; "the Black Spider" and "the Iron Lion of Zion" are particular favorites, along with defender Pa Modou Kah's tweeted entry, "Grandpa Ricketts".

To win the award, Ricketts beat out perennial contender Nick Rimando of Real Salt Lake. Although Rimando handily won the media vote, Ricketts edged him out in the player vote and received a clear majority of the club vote to seal the reward.

The Timbers' press release:


PORTLAND, Ore. – Major League Soccer today announced that Portland Timbers goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts is the recipient of the 2013 Allstate Goalkeeper of the Year award.

The award was voted on by media, MLS players and MLS club management based on regular-season performance.

Ricketts, 36, put together a record-setting season with Portland as the Jamaican international set career highs in shutouts (14), saves (92) and minutes played (2,880) during his first full season with the Timbers. Ricketts registered a league-high mark for shutouts in 2013, while also ranking among league leaders in wins (13), goals-against average (0.97) and saves percentage (73 percent). Ricketts, who was voted by players to the 2013 MLS All-Star inactive roster, was named to the 2013 MLS Best XI on Tuesday.

Named Goalkeeper of the Year in 2010, Ricketts becomes the fourth two-time winner of the award in MLS history after Joe Cannon (2002, 2004), Pat Onstad (2003, 2005) and Zach Thornton (1998, 2009).

During the regular season, Ricketts was a 10-time winner of MLS Save of the Week and compiled three of the top 10 longest streaks without conceding a goal. He assembled a 401-minute shutout streak from May 18-25; June 15-July 7 (missing a 2-2 draw at Chicago on June 8 due to international duty), setting a Timbers MLS club record for longest individual shutout streak. Ricketts also logged shutout streaks of 323 minutes (Sept. 14-Oct. 6) and 312 minutes (March 30-April 21) while helping Portland set an MLS club record with six consecutive home shutouts from April 6-June 23. Ricketts logged 10 of Portland’s MLS single-season record 11 home shutouts during the regular season. His 14 clean sheets in 2013 are tied for the most shutouts in a single season for a Timbers goalkeeper across all eras.

In just 41 career games with Portland, 32 of which came during the 2013 regular season, Ricketts quickly moved atop the club’s MLS career goalkeeping chart, becoming the career leader in goalkeeper wins (16) and shutouts (16), while earning a 13-5-14 overall record this season.  

The other finalists for the 2013 Allstate Goalkeeper of the Year included Nick Rimando of Real Salt Lake, and Sporting Kansas City’s Jimmy Nielsen. Below is a breakdown of the voting for the top four candidates:

Player (Club)

% of Club Votes

% of Media Votes

% of Player Votes

Weighted Total

Donovan Ricketts (POR)





Nick Rimando (RSL)





Jimmy Nielsen (SKC)





Luis Robles (NY)





Allstate Goalkeeper of the Year Winners:
2013: Donovan Ricketts – Portland Timbers
2012: Jimmy Nielsen – Sporting Kansas City
2011: Kasey KellerSeattle Sounders FC
2010: Donovan Ricketts – LA Galaxy
2009: Zach Thornton – Chivas USA
2008: Jon BuschChicago Fire
2007: Brad Guzan – Chivas USA
2006: Troy PerkinsD.C. United
2005: Pat Onstad – San Jose Earthquakes
2004: Joe Cannon – Colorado Rapids
2003: Pat Onstad – San Jose Earthquakes
2002: Joe Cannon – San Jose Earthquakes
2001: Tim Howard – MetroStars
2000: Tony Meola – Kansas City Wizards
1999: Kevin Hartman – LA Galaxy
1998: Zach Thornton – Chicago Fire
1997: Brad FriedelColumbus Crew
1996: Mark Dodd – Dallas Burn

Awards Announcement Schedule
Dec. 5: AT&T Goal of the Year, Save of the Year, Volkswagen MLS Most Valuable Player