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LA Galaxy stars Jelle Van Damme, Gyasi Zardes finalists for 2016 MLS End of Year awards

Defender of the Year, Humanitarian of the Year awards up for grabs

MLS: Real Salt Lake at LA Galaxy Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Major League Soccer announced this morning that LA Galaxy defender Jelle Van Damme has been nominated as Defender of the Year and Newcomer of the Year, and Gyasi Zardes is also a finalist for the MLS Works Humanitarian of the Year.

It’s no surprise the big Belgian is up for Defender of the Year. Van Damme led an experienced backline that gave up just 39 goals, tied for third-fewest in the league. A spark plug capable of jump starting the Galaxy attack with his swashbuckling runs and pinpoint passing, JVD has chipped in five assists this season, including Sunday’s beauty.

Hard to see Van Damme not taking home the trophy, though with Nicolas Lodeiro in such hot form, he might have a tougher time bringing home the newcomer award.

MLS Works Humanitarian of the Year finalists

Matt Lampson (Chicago Fire)
Luis Robles (New York Red Bulls)
Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy)

Defender of the Year finalists

Matt Hedges (FC Dallas)
Axel Sjoberg (Colorado Rapids)
Jelle Van Damme (LA Galaxy)

Newcomer of the Year finalists

Ola Kamara (Columbus Crew SC)
Nicolas Lodeiro (Seattle Sounders FC)
Jelle Van Damme (LA Galaxy)

Good luck gentleman!