Andre Blake, Jamaica’s regular first choice between the sticks, scooped two top awards in the recently completed MLS is Back Tournament in North America. He won the prestigious Golden Glove, after being voted as the top keeper (by fans and the media), and the Save of the Tournament award.
The 29-year-old helped guide Philadephia Union to the semi-final stage, and produced the highest number of saves (32) in the behind closed doors tournament with a staggering 86.5% save percentage.
Out of Blake’s 32 saves during the MLS is Back Tournament, 19 of these were from inside the penalty area that included keeping out Héber’s point-blank effort in the 1-0 success over New York City FC on 9 July that earned him the coveted Save of the Tournament prize. May Pen-born Blake’s career really kicked off in 2014 when he made his international debut for the Reggae Boyz and signed for Union, making his club debut in a friendly against English Premier League’s London outfit Crystal Palace.
Blake won the 2016 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year and has been part of the successful Jamaican side, having played 43 internationals and is the current captain of the Boyz.
The Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) said in statement about their skipper: “Any award received for outstanding performance in a tournament after a three-month lockdown must be seen through different eyes and must be highly respected.
“Following a period when training would have been challenging, when interaction with fellow players would be highly restricted and there was less physical contact with coaches, only extraordinary personal discipline, determination and focus would allow a player to give outstanding performances ahead of his peers.
“Andre Blake has always showed those characteristics throughout his playing career, and the JFF is indeed proud that he will be leading the Qatar Motivated campaign of our Reggae Boyz in which these same characteristics plus his proven leadership qualities will be on display.”
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