The 29-year-old Spaniard impacted the game with every touch of the ball, with his ability to thread the perfect pass in the final third or his goal-scoring prowess. He was tied atop MLS with 10 assists and his nine goals were tied for eighth-best in 2020.
Pozuelo helped guide Toronto FC to the second-best overall record in the league, finishing second in the Eastern Conference behind the Philadelphia Union.
He was named to the MLS Best XI presented by The Home Depot for a second successive season in 2020, leading MLS in chances created (70) and game-winning goals (5).
Pozuelo also showcased his durability as the only Toronto FC player to start every match this season, ranking ninth in the league in minutes played. That despite revealing an undisclosed injury that limited his production in his final six games.
Pozuelo, the second Toronto FC player to win the award after Italian midfielder Sebastian Giovinco was named MVP in 2015, claimed 35.35 percent of the weighted vote. LAFC’s Diego Rossi, who captured the Golden Boot presented by Audi for his league-leading 14 goals in 19 appearances, finished second in the voting (17.80 percent), followed by Seattle Sounders playmaker Nico Lodeiro (10.58) and winger Jordan Morris (8.49) and Allstate Goalkeeper of the Year Andre Blake of the Philadelphia Union, who had 4.91 percent of the weighted vote.
Pozuelo arrived in Toronto after transferring from KRC Genk, signing as a Designated Player on March 4, 2019 and had 12 goals and 12 assists in his first MLS season, helping guide the Reds to the MLS Cup Final with two goals and three assists in last year’s Audi MLS Cup Playoffs. He started his career coming up through the youth ranks at Real Betis and also featured for Swansea City in the English Premier League, Rayo Vallecano and KRC Genk, where he had 25 goals and 60 assists in 175 appearances across five seasons.
Pozuelo is the second player from Spain to win the MLS Most Valuable Player award, both coming in the last five years (along with David Villa of New York City FC in 2016).
The Landon Donovan MLS MVP award has been presented since 1996 to the individual determined by a poll of players, club technical staff and the media to be the most valuable to his club. Below is a breakdown of the voting results for 2020.
|Alejandro Pozuelo (TOR)||20.15%||37.72%||48.19%||35.35%|
|Diego Rossi (LAFC)||22.77%||13.16%||17.48%||17.80%|
|Nicolás Lodeiro (SEA)||6.15%||14.91%||10.66%||10.58%|
|Jordan Morris (SEA)||13.54%||7.02%||4.90%||8.49%|
|Andre Blake (PHI)||4.77%||5.26%||4.69%||4.91%|
Landon Donovan MLS MVP winners
- 2020: Alejandro Pozuelo – Toronto FC
- 2019: Carlos Vela – Los Angeles Football Club
- 2018: Josef Martinez – Atlanta United FC
- 2017: Diego Valeri – Portland Timbers
- 2016: David Villa – New York City FC
- 2015: Sebastian Giovinco – Toronto FC
- 2014: Robbie Keane – LA Galaxy
- 2013: Mike Magee – Chicago Fire
- 2012: Chris Wondolowski – San Jose Earthquakes
- 2011: Dwayne De Rosario – D.C. United
- 2010: David Ferreira – FC Dallas
- 2009: Landon Donovan – LA Galaxy
- 2008: Guillermo Barros Schelotto – Columbus Crew
- 2007: Luciano Emilio – D.C. United
- 2006: Christian Gomez – D.C. United
- 2005: Taylor Twellman – New England Revolution
- 2004: Amado Guevara – MetroStars
- 2003: Preki – Kansas City Wizards
- 2002: Carlos Ruiz – LA Galaxy
- 2001: Alex Pineda Chacon – Miami Fusion
- 2000: Tony Meola – Kansas City Wizards
- 1999: Jason Kreis – Dallas Burn
- 1998: Marco Etcheverry – D.C. United
- 1997: Preki – Kansas City Wizards
- 1996: Carlos Valderrama – Tampa Bay Mutiny