Following a breakout performance that saw him score the first-ever hat trick in Austin FC history, Moussa Djitté has taken home Player of the Week presented by Continental Tire honors for Week 31 of the 2022 season.
The 22-year-old took over the match after entering as a 58th-minute substitute in Austin's Western Conference fixture at Q2 Stadium against Real Salt Lake on Wednesday evening, striking for all his team's goals in the eventual 3-0 victory and officially clinching his club a spot in the Audi 2022 MLS Cup Playoffs.
Along with netting the first hat trick in club history, Djitté becomes the sixth player in MLS history to record a hat trick after entering as a substitute and just the second to do so after entering in the 55th minute or later.
The three-goal outburst gives Djitté four goals in 14 MLS appearances (one start) across 282 minutes in his second season with Austin following his 2021 arrival from French side Grenoble. All four goals this season have come in substitute duty, which is tied for the third-most in MLS behind LA Galaxy forward Dejan Jovelic and D.C. United forward Ola Kamara.
He's the second Austin FC player to win Player of the Week honors, joining former teammate Tomás Pochettino, who got the honors in Week 17 of the 2021 campaign and has since-departed on loan to River Plate. Djitté and Jovelic are the only players to win the award as substitutes this season.
With Wednesday's emphatic victory officially locking down a historic first playoff berth, Austin FC will look to solidify a top-two spot in the Western Conference when they return to action on Saturday with a home matchup against Nashville SC (9 pm ET | MLS LIVE on ESPN+).
The MLS Player of the Week presented by Continental Tire is selected each week of the regular season through both media and fan voting in a process conducted by MLS Communications. A panel of journalists from the North American Soccer Reporters (NASR) comprises 75 percent of the vote, while a Twitter fan vote represents the remaining 25 percent of voting. NASR consists of members of print, television, radio, and online media.