Player of the Matchday

Sporting KC's Johnny Russell named Week 33 MLS Player of the Week

After scoring twice to lead Sporting Kansas City to a 2-0 win over the LA Galaxy at Children's Mercy Park on Wednesday, Johnny Russell has been named MLS Player of the Week for Week 33.

The red-hot Scotsman continued his recent tear with the brace, notching goals in the 40th and 82nd minutes to give SKC the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference's Audi MLS Cup Playoffs race, drawing even with the Seattle Sounders on 58 points. They hold the lead via the second tiebreaker of goal differential.

Now, Russell has scored in eight straight matches and 10 times total across that span.

SKC's captain opened the scoring against LA with a tight-angled finish that has become something of a signature move. The 31-year-old went near-post on goalkeeper Jonathan Bond from the right side, giving the backstop no chance to stop the laser finish.

His second tally was even better as the match approached full time with Sporting KC still leading 1-0. This time, Russell curled home a clinical bending strike to the top corner of the far post, capping off the three-point result for the home side.

The performance puts Peter Vermes' group in prime position to control their own destiny in the race for the West's top seed, with a game in hand on both Seattle and third-place Colorado.

The MLS Player of the Week 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 the vote. NASR consists of members of print, television, radio and online media.