Tim Howard wins player of year award

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Goalkeeper Tim Howard has won the 2014 Player of the Year award for his work with the U.S. national team.

It is the first time Howard has won the prestigious honor given to a U.S. team member by Futbol de Primera. Howard received 101 first-place votes from a panel of journalists nationwide for a total of 363 points. He beat out Jermaine Jones, who had 160 points, and Clint Dempsey (147).

Howard, 35, made eight appearances for the national team, including some spectacular performances at the World Cup. He made 16 saves in the Americans' 2-1 loss in extra time to Belgium in the second round in Brazil.

Howard has stepped away from playing for the national team for this season. He is Everton's keeper in the English Premier League and has been with the club since 2006.

The second keeper to win the award - Kasey Keller got it twice - Howard has made 104 appearances for the national team. This was the sixth time he was a finalist for the honor.

Midfielder Jones, who was born in Germany, has 10 caps this year with the U.S squad and 48 caps overall. He was one of the standouts for the Americans at the World Cup, scoring against Portugal in a 2-2 draw and using his physical style to help the United States emerge from a difficult first-round group.

He currently is with the New England Revolution and has helped them make the MLS Cup against the Los Angeles Galaxy.

Dempsey has nine caps this year with the U.S. team and scored three goals. He has 39 goals in 110 games since joining the national squad in 2004. Dempsey currently is with the Seattle Sounders of MLS.

A player receives three points for each first-place vote in the balloting, two points for each second-place vote, and one point for each third-place vote. In order to be eligible for the award, a player must have played in a minimum of three games for the U.S. team during the calendar year.

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