Pedro Santos continues his success story for Columbus Crew SC this season when the midfielder was nominated for the 2019 MLS Goal of The Year award.
Santos’ nominated goal came in the Aug. 10’s 2-2 draw against FC Cincinnati at MAPFRE Stadium. The strike came from 30 yards out when Cincinnati gave Santos too much room and the Portuguese fired a shot into the upper 90 to tie the game at two.
The goal speaks for itself, and how much it meant to the fans and Santos is evident. The Crew went on to win the second game against FC Cincy later the month, 3-1 in the Queen City.
Prior to this season, Santos, who joined the club in 2017, had scored just one goal and recorded nine assists. In his third year with the Black & Gold, the winger has found his scoring form and impressed Crew fans with his dynamic and play, tallying 11 goals and six assists.
Aside from playing his natural winger position, Santos showed his versatility this season when he took over the No. 10 role after Federico Higuain underwent season-ending ACL reconstruction in the middle of the season. This put Santos more central on the field and allowed his scoring prowess to come to the forefront.
With Santos taking over the role, the freedom he had to play in the midfield was unbelievable. Santos had complete control of games and the ability to set up plays from the center, and have the team play more wide and direct instead of being tight and conservative.
The Portuguese star has seen his time increase, starting almost every game this season with 33 matches played, starting 30 and playing 2,763 minutes on the year. The statement made by Santos showed that he has earned the Designated Player and International slot on the Crew’s roster.
But his star play isn’t what caught the attention of MLS.
Santos has a knack for scoring goals, and there have been some beauties. For example, his long-range chip against the Portland Timbers or the opening goal against Atlanta United in the downpour in the second minute. However, the game-tying goal against Cincinnati was the best of the bunch.
Santos hopes to continue his incredible play next year in 2020 when the Black & Gold open the season in March. The Portuguese midfielder’s contract is up following the year but after his play in 2019, it is hard to imagine the Crew not bringing Santos back to Columbus.
You can vote for Pedro Santos’ strike against FC Cincinnati by visiting the link here.