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Finalists Named for 2007 U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year Awards

CHICAGO (November 16, 2007) – The finalists for each of the four prestigious U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year Awards – Male, Female, Young Male and Young Female – have been announced by the sport’s governing body in the United States.

With the announcement, voting for the high profile annual U.S. Soccer awards begins today at, with fans having the opportunity to make their selections once a day through Friday, Dec. 7.

The U.S. Soccer Male and Female Athletes of the Year awards are the oldest and most prestigious awards of their kind, dating back to 1984 for the men and 1985 for the women, while the Young Male and Young Female awards were added in 1998.

The finalists for each award were nominated on the basis of: a) competing and excelling at the highest level (both at the national team and professional level) during the calendar year; b) exhibiting decorum on and off the field that reflects well on U.S. Soccer; and c) contributing toward the growth, development, credibility and popularization of soccer in the USA. A player can only win a Youth Athlete award once in his or her career (past winners).

Online votes for the annual award will be tallied and equivalent to 50 percent of the total votes. As in years past, the other 50 percent will be represented by votes compiled from members of the national media and U.S. Soccer representatives (from national team coaches to the National Board of Directors).

In addition to voting for the annual U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year Awards, fans can also vote daily for the sixth annual series of “Best of U.S. Soccer” awards until the Dec. 7 deadline. The 2007 “Best of U.S. Soccer” awards will be decided entirely by online fan votes submitted over the next month.

U.S. Soccer Female Athlete of the Year Candidates

  • Lori Chalupny, Midfielder
  • Kristine Lilly, Forward
  • Heather O'Reilly, Forward
  • Abby Wambach, Forward
  • Cat Whitehill, Defender

U.S. Soccer Male Athlete of the Year Candidates

  • DaMarcus Beasley, Midfielder 
  • Carlos Bocanegra, Defender 
  •  Clint Dempsey, Forward/Midfielder 
  •  Landon Donovan, Midfielder/Forward 
  •  Tim Howard, Goalkeeper

U.S. Soccer Young Female Athlete of the Year Candidates 

  • Rachel Buehler, Defender
  • Lauren Cheney, Forward
  • Tina DiMartino, Midfielder
  • Tobin Heath, Midfielder
  • Kelley O'Hara, Forward

U.S. Soccer Young Male Athlete of the Year Candidates

  • Mykell Bates, Defender 
  • Michael Bradley, Midfielder 
  • Chris Seitz, Goalkeeper 
  • Danny Szetela, Midfielder 
  • Sal Zizzo, Midfielder 

Click here to see bios and vote