Best Rapid (2004)

Pablo Mastroeni

Now in his third year with the Colorado Rapids, defense-obsessed mid-fielder Pablo Mastroeni has revealed a new taste for attack, but there's no one better in Major League Soccer as a stopper. Just 5' 9" and 150 pounds, the Argentine native moved to Phoenix when he was four and played college soccer at North Carolina State. Those who previously didn't know him -- or the game itself -- took notice in 2002, when Mastroeni became a vital part of the U.S. National Team that shocked perennial powers like Portugal and Mexico at the World Cup before that tough loss to the Germans. Once again, National coach Bruce Arena has picked Mastroeni (and Rapids teammate Ritchie Kotschau) for his roster, but Rapids fans will get to watch the feisty, dogged defender all season long at Invesco Field.


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