Massis Post – Real Salt Lake forward Yura Movsisyan was voted Etihad Airways MLS Player of the Month by fans on MLSsoccer.com for the month of June of the 2016 MLS season.
In his second stint with Real Salt Lake after re-joining the club this offseason from Spartak Moscow, Movsisyan had a tremendous month, scoring three goals in three consecutive games as RSL went 2-1-1 in June. The one-time Russian Premier League Golden Boot winner has proven incredibly important for RSL this season, as the team is 4-0-2 in matches where Movsisyan scores He now has six goals on the season as RSL sits third in the Western Conference standings (27 points, 8-5-3 record).
“When I came back to Real Salt Lake, I said I wanted to score goals and win games. Doing both right now has made this a great homecoming,” Movsisyan said. “I want to thank all the fans who voted for me and continue to support RSL.”
Movsisyan is the second Real Salt Lake player to earn Player of the Month honors this year after FW Joao Plata did the same in March. He is the fifrth different RSL player to earn the award, joining FW Jeff Cunningham (August, 2006), GK Nick Rimando (July, 2008 and June, 2010), Alvaro Saborio (May, 2010) and Plata (March, 2016).
Movsisyan’s first goal of June came in RSL’s 3-2 victory over New York City FC at Yankee Stadium on June 2. With NYCFC leading early in the second half, Movsisyan made a run into the box, collecting a pass and overpowering a defender to create enough space for a right-footed shot to bring the match level 1-1. Movsisyan has proven unbelievably clutch with all six of his goals this season coming in the second half of play.
After a two-week break for Copa America Centenario, Movsisyan picked up right where he left off, as he scored the game-tying goal against the Portland Timbers on June 18 at Rio Tinto Stadium. With Real Salt Lake trailing by a goal late in the match, Movsisyan attacked the Timbers defense, drawing a foul and setting up a penalty kick. Movsisyan would proceed to convert the penalty in the 70th minute to draw RSL even for a final 2-2 score.
In yet another positive result for RSL, Movsisyan again scored an equalizing goal in a 2-1 victory over the New York Red Bulls on June 22 at Rio Tinto Stadium. Down a goal in the 65th minute, midfielder John Stertzer sent a wonderful ball into the box that Movsisyan rose to and headed past Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles, drawing the match even at 1-1.
Voting for MLS Player of the Month presented by Etihad is open to public. The five final nominees are chosen by MLSsoccer.com editorial staff.
June Voting Results
Real Salt Lake forward Yura Movsisyan – 36.77%
New York City FC midfielder Jack Harrison – 22.01%
Philadelphia Union midfielder Roland Alberg – 21.15%
Portland Timbers midfielder Diego Valeri – 12.32%
D.C. United goalkeeper Bill Hamid – 7.75%