Portland Timbers star Sebastian Blanco named MLS is Back Player of the Tournament presented by adidas

After winning the MLS is Back Tournament, Portland Timbers midfielder Sebastian Blanco has been named the Player of the Tournament presented by adidas. He took home 40.86% of the weighted media and fan vote, narrowly edging out Orlando City captain Nani’s 37.54%.

Blanco had three goals and five assists during Portland’s run, which concluded Tuesday night with a 2-1 win over Orlando. That victory earned Portland an automatic berth in the 2021 Concacaf Champions League. Blanco, 32, scored or assisted in every game except for the final. The Designated Player tied for the lead among all players in assists and was tied for sixth in goals.

Blanco, who joined Portland in 2017 from San Lorenzo, has 25 goals and 33 assists in regular-season play across the last three-plus seasons. He’s helped the club reach the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs in each of his three campaigns, including an appearance in the 2018 MLS Cup.

Portland head coach Giovanni Savarese, ahead of the final against Orlando, observed what’s different about Blanco in 2020. Whether from wide or central positions, he continually powered his side forward.

“I think what I see this year a little bit different is that he’s a lot more calm,” Savarese said in the lead-up to the semifinal against Philadelphia. “I think there’s a higher level of maturity in his game that he’s been able to bring to this year that is allowing him to be able to bring an even different level up, or better said, show what he shows every single day in practice more constant in every game.”

The MLS is Back Player of the Tournament presented by adidas award was voted on by media (weighted 75% of vote) and fans (weighted 25% of vote). Third place went to LAFC forward Diego Rossi and fourth place went to Philadelphia Union goalkeeper Andre Blake. Rossi was previously named the MLS is Back Young Player of the Tournament presented by AT&T 5G, while Blake was previously won the MLS is Back Tournament Golden Glove presented by Allstate.

MLS is Back Player of the Tournament presented by adidas voting

Rank Player Team Media % Fan % Final %
Sebastian Blanco POR 49.61% 14.64% 40.86%
2 Nani ORL 33.86% 49.61% 37.54%
3 Diego Rossi LAFC 11.81% 30.16% 16.40%
4 Andre Blake PHI 3.15% 6.61% 4.01%
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