All-Star Game reserve players
Jon Busch (Columbus Crew): Despite being among the shortest goalkeepers in MLS today, Busch commands his penalty area like few do in MLS. Since winning the starting job in 2002, when he registered the second lowest goals-against-average in MLS (1.09) and played every minute en route to the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup championship, Busch has exhibited the reflexes and alertness which have made him one of the toughest goalkeepers to beat. A former A-League Goalkeeper of the Year, Busch will be making his first All-Star team on the strength of five shutouts in the first half of 2004.
Clint Dempsey (New England Revolution): The Nike Project-40 player has justified the expectations of the New England Revolution and head coach Steve Nicol, who made him the No. 8 selection in the 2004 MLS SuperDraft. The U.S. youth international has four goals at the halfway point of the season, ranking him second on the team in scoring, Dempsey has shown an impressive versatility, serving as needed both in midfield and at center forward in an injury-riddled season for the Revolution. A tough, hardnosed battler with a complete skill set, the stoic Dempsey has played like a veteran, leaving his mark with a never-say-die attitude and his penchant for diving headers in the box.
Bobby Convey (D.C. United): After coming into MLS in 2000 as the youngest player in league history at the time, Convey is now an established leader for both club and country, selected to his second All-Star Game. Now in his fifth season with D.C. United, Convey has become a fixture on the left side of midfield, while occupying the left back position as a regular starter with the U.S. national team. His crafty skills and creative vision have attracted the interest of some of the top clubs in the world, with Tottenham Hotspur of the English Premier League signing him in 2003 only for the move to be scuttled due to denial of a work permit.
Ben Olsen (D.C. United): The heart and soul of D.C. United, Olsen is in his seventh season with the club, taking the league by storm in 1998 when he won Rookie of the Year honors. His years of spirited midfield displays with D.C. United have been marked by championships - and long-term injuries which cost him most of 2000 and all of 2001. The former U.S. international and 2000 Olympian, Olsen now operates as a central midfield for United after years of running rampant up and down the right flank. This year marks his fourth career All-Star selection.
Pat Noonan (New England Revolution): Now in his second season, Noonan has established himself as a lethal striker for the Revolution, leading the club with a team-high five goals at the season's halfway point. His skill on the ball and opportunism in front of goal have made him a goal-scoring threat in MLS. A midfielder at Indiana University, he began his MLS career at midfield before moving to forward where he cemented his position scoring 10 regular season goals and two more in the playoffs. The 2003 Rookie of the Year candidate earned his first international cap for the USA on March 13 vs. Haiti.
Alecko Eskandarian (D.C. United): After scoring three goals as a rookie last year, the No. 1 pick of the 2003 MLS SuperDraft had already doubled that goal production with a team-leading six tallies halfway through this season. A natural finisher with rare goal-scoring instincts in the box, Eskandarian has shown a knack for being in the right place at the right time in front of goal. The 2002 Hermann Trophy winner as the top player in collegiate soccer with the University of Virginia, Eskandarian has also starred on several U.S. youth national teams.
Freddy Adu (D.C. United): Widely recognized as the most talented young soccer player in the world today, the 15-year-old Freddy Adu became the youngest professional athlete in the history of modern U.S. team sports when he took the field for his MLS debut on April 3. The first overall selection in the 2004 SuperDraft by D.C. United, Adu played in United's first 16 games and scored two goals. An immigrant from Ghana, who moved to the U.S. with his family at the age of eight, he joined MLS after a stellar youth national team career which saw him star at both the Under-17 and World Youth (under-20) Championships in 2003.
Kevin Hartman (Los Angeles Galaxy): Elected to his third All-Star Game after starting in the 2003 edition at The Home Depot Center. Hartman has been a stalwart for the Galaxy in his eight seasons with the club since joining the team in 1997. Among the all-time league leaders in several goalkeeping categories, the 1999 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year has been in the nets for the squad for every one of the team's championship conquests. Hartman continues to uphold his reputation with clutch saves, consistency and sharp decision-making on his way to further adding to what has been a standout professional career.
Jimmy Conrad (Kansas City Wizards): An established and experienced MLS defender, Conrad has played the best soccer of his career since moving to the Wizards in a trade before the 2003 season. Since arriving in Kansas City after four seasons in San Jose where he won an MLS Cup championship in 2001, Conrad has started every regular season game through the first half of this season. A force in the aerial game, an expert tackler and fierce one-on-one marker, the UCLA graduate is also a personality in the locker room.
Kerry Zavagnin (Kansas City Wizards): The omnipresent Wizards central midfielder earns his first career MLS selection as he enters his fifth season with Kansas City. After two years of spot duty with the MetroStars in 1997-'98, Zavagnin returned to MLS in 2000, where he was a midfield cog in the Wizards' dominant MLS Cup championship run. A constant in the Kansas City lineup with no fewer than 27 starts in his four seasons in Kansas City, Zavagnin continues to receive national recognition in the latter stages of his career. The All-Star recognition comes at a time when the Michigan native has broken through with the U.S. national team, earning four of his six caps in 2004.
Chris Klein (Kansas City Wizards): One of the most dominant and complete wingers in MLS history, Klein will be making his second All-Star appearance. Now in his seventh MLS season, all spent with Kansas City, Klein is a powerful two-way midfielder and he has been a frequent call-up for the U.S. national team. Winner of an MLS Cup championship with the Wizards in 2000, Klein has made no fewer than 23 starts in each of his last five seasons on both left and right flanks, where his powerful runs and equally strong long-distance drives are among the most well-known attributes of one of the league's complete players.
Jovan Kirovski (Los Angeles Galaxy): After spending the first part of his professional career with some of the elite clubs in Europe since 1992, Kirovski has returned stateside and immediately earned All-Star status in his first season in MLS. Establishing himself early on as a quality finisher, his strong technique and work rate have allowed him to range across the entire attacking front. Along with his international club resume which includes stints with world powers Manchester United and Borussia Dortmund, the California native has been a member of the U.S. national team since 1994.
Josh Wolff (Kansas City Wizards): In his first injury-free season in several years, the Wizards forward was selected to his second All-Star Game (elected in 2002 but did not play due to injury) after experiencing his most productive campaign in years. Renowned for his speed and abilities in one-on-one battles, he spent five years with the Chicago Fire before moving to the Wizards in a trade at the start of the 2003 season. The 2000 Olympian and veteran of the 2002 World Cup is a regular call-up to the U.S. national team.
Jason Kreis (Dallas Burn): The league's recently-crowned all-time goal-scoring king will make his seventh MLS All-Star Game as a Commissioner's selection (did not play in 2001 and 2003 due to injury). An original member of the Dallas Burn in his ninth season, Kreis eclipsed ex-MLS forward Roy Lassiter on June 26 to become MLS' all-time leader in goals scored, a title which marks the peak of a career dedicated to his club. The 1999 Honda MVP, respected for his professionalism and renowned for his blistering free kicks, has led his team in scoring in five of the previous eight seasons.
Danny Califf (Los Angeles Galaxy): Injuries have not only limited the U.S. national team defender's minutes in 2004 (seven games) but they will also prevent him from participating in the 2004 All-Star Game, one year after making his first appearance in the event. Although the 2004 season has been a trying one for Califf, the 24-year-old remains one of the league's outstanding defenders in his fifth season. The No. 6 overall selection in the 2000 MLS SuperDraft, the 2000 Olympian has become a fixture for club and country. Since coming on strong in his rookie season, the strong and physical defender has anchored his club's back line in its recent championship conquests.