Will Schalke and USA talent Weston McKennie be celebrating when the winner of the US Soccer 2018 Male Player of the Year award is announced in December? - © gettyimages / Mladen Antonov
Will Schalke and USA talent Weston McKennie be celebrating when the winner of the US Soccer 2018 Male Player of the Year award is announced in December? - © gettyimages / Mladen Antonov
Bundesliga

Schalke and USA international Weston McKennie nominated for US Soccer 2018 Male Player of the Year award

Schalke's Weston McKennie is one of five first-time candidates for the US Soccer 2018 Male Player of the Year award.

Fellow USA internationals Tyler Adams, Matt Miazga, Zack Steffen and Will Trapp complete the list of nominees for the prize last won by Borussia Dortmund's Christian Pulisic.

The year of McKennie?

McKennie's nomination comes on the back of his breakout season as a professional. He featured regularly as Schalke finished second in the 2017/18 Bundesliga, and earned his first cap for the USMNT, scoring on debut in a friendly against Portugal in November 2017.

As well as opening his Bundesliga account in a game against Fortuna Düsseldorf, the now eight-time USA international has since played, scored and assisted a goal in the UEFA Champions League. He has also carved out quite the niche as an all-rounder, having played in his preferred midfield role, defence and as a second striker.

Watch: Relive Weston McKennie's first Bundesliga goal

Pulisic and Donovan among previous winners

Should he win, 20-year-old McKennie would become the sixth Bundesliga-based American to claim the prize. Thomas Dooley was the first, at Kaiserslautern, in 1993; Eric Wynalda triumphed three years later while at Bochum; goalkeeper Kasey Keller took the honour in 2005 after moving to Borussia Mönchengladbach; Landon Donovan won it in 2009, the same year he spent a brief loan stint at Bayern Munich; and Pulisic became the youngest ever recipient in 2017.

Votes from national team coaches, any USMNT player that earned a cap in 2018, the US Soccer Board of Directors, the US Soccer Athletes’ Council, MLS and USL head coaches, select media representatives and former players and administrators will determine the winner.

Voting for the award closes on 3 December 2018 at 11.59pm ET. The winner will be announced during the first week of December.

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