Unsurprisingly Houston Dynamo forward Mauro Manotas was named Major League Soccer (MLS) Player of the Week for week 29. The award comes from the North American Soccer Reporters after Manotas scored a hat-trick against the defending MLS Champions Portland Timbers.
Manotas’ hat-trick gave the Dynamo a 3-1 win, scoring all three goals in the sixth hat-trick in Dynamo history. Manotas was the youngest ever scorer of a Dynamo hat-trick and is the youngest in this MLS season so far.
After starting the season in the United Soccer League (USL) with Rio Grande Valley Toros, Manotas was quickly recalled to the Dynamo. Since then he has forced his way in to the starting side and has become a star, shown by his last performance.
The opening goal came from the spot as Manotas buried a penalty in the 34th minute before Portland scored an equalizer. In the 73rd minute Houston restored their lead through a stunning Manotas goal which he hit from the center of the box which saw him nominated for goal of the week.
The hat-trick was wrapped up five minutes from time as he was set up by Cristian Maidana, playing him clean behind the back line. That left Maidana with a simple finish sending it past the Portland goalkeeper Jake Gleeson to wrap up the 3-1 win and push the Timbers’ season down as they struggle to defend their title.