Wan Kuzain Wan Kamal's wonderstrike wins USL Fans' Choice Goal of the Year

The people have spoken (and voted): Wan Kuzain Wan Kamal’s wonderstrike is the absolute best of the bunch.

Kuzain secured USL Fans’ Choice Goal of the Year honors on Friday for his brilliant free kick in the Swope Park Rangers’ 2-1 win over Tulsa Roughnecks FC on Aug. 29 at Children’s Mercy Park. The SPR and Sporting KC midfielder beat out San Antonio FC’s Alex Bruce in the final round of fan voting on USLChampionship.com to seal the award.

The 20-year-old’s dipping strike against Tulsa landed him on SportsCenter’s Top 10 for the second time this year and ultimately helped the Rangers to their third consecutive appearance in the USL Cup Playoffs.

The 2018 USL campaign featured 1,655 regular season goals from 33 different clubs, but Kuzain’s belter reigned supreme after navigating a four-round vote for Goal of the Year. Kuzain knocked off Louisville City FC’s Cameron Lancaster, FC Cincinnati’s Kenney Walker and Ottawa Fury’s Cristian Portilla before ousting Bruce with 66 percent of the final vote.

Kuzain becomes the second straight SPR player to win USL Fans’ Choice Goal of the Year accolades. Forward Nansel Selbol earned the recognition in 2017 for his curling strike in a road win against Seattle Sounders FC 2.

Kuzain scored four goals in 22 games for the Rangers this season in addition to logging a goal and an assist in eight appearances with Sporting KC. His 89.3 percent passing accuracy in the USL ranked fourth best among all midfielders with a minimum of 75 passes, and his two goals from set pieces – including his Goal of the Year winner – were third-most in the USL.

A product of the Sporting KC Academy, Kuzain became the ninth Homegrown Player in club history upon signing an MLS contract in April and the first to progress from the Sporting KC Academy to the Swope Park Rangers to the senior team. He made his MLS debut in May and one week later became the second-youngest player in club history to score a regular season goal with the game-winner in a 4-1 victory over Minnesota United FC.

2018 Fans’ Choice Goal of the Year Voting

First Round Results
Jesús Enríquez (72%) def. Matthew Harding (28%)
Cristian Portilla (63%) def. Jorge Herrera (37%)
Wan Kuzain (53%) def. Cameron Lancaster (47%)
Kenney Walker (66%) def. Franck Tayou (34%)
Jason Johnson (59%) def. Sammy Ochoa (41%)
Alex Bruce (66%) def. Lagos Kunga (34%)

Second Round Results
Cristian Portilla (57%) def. Jesús Enríquez (43%)
Wan Kuzain (52%) def. Kenney Walker (48%)
Alex Bruce (57%) def. Jason Johnson (43%)

The Rebound Results
Kenney Walker (34%)
Jason Johnson (28%)
Cameron Lancaster (20%)
Jorge Herrera (8%)
Matthew Harding (4%)
Jesús Enríquez (3%)
Sammy Ochoa (2%)
Franck Tayou (1%)
Lagos Kunga (1%)

Semifinal Results
Wan Kuzain (71%) def. Cristian Portilla (29%)
Alex Bruce (55%) def. Kenney Walker (45%)

Final Result
Wan Kuzain (66%) def. Alex Bruce (34%)

Topics: