NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Sept. 26, 2023) – Nashville Soccer Club announced tonight the winners of the club’s awards in a private ceremony held with players and staff at GEODIS Park. Hany Mukhtar, Shaq Moore, Sam Surridge, Jacob Shaffelburg, Taylor Washington, Adem Sipić and Kemy Amiche were all recognized throughout the evening.
Reigning Landon Donovan MLS 2022 MVP Hany Mukhtar took home Nashville SC’s Most Valuable Player award presented by Renasant Bank and Nashville SC’s Offensive Player of the Year award. Mukhtar has maintained a consistent attacking form over the last three seasons as he has accumulated 54 goals in 92 appearances (58 goals and 37 in 108 across four regular seasons), which makes him the fifth ranking player in MLS with the most contributions in that span, and just the eighth player in MLS history to net 15 or more goals in three successive seasons.
His assist to Teal Bunbury on Sept. 23, 2023 saw him etch his name in history once more as he became just the second ever player to register 10+ goals and 10+ assists in three consecutive MLS seasons (also Preki 1996-98).
Mukhtar’s 62 goals and 37 assists in 114 games in MLS (including playoffs) puts him just one goal contribution away from reaching the 100-mark milestone. He currently leads Nashville SC in goal contributions with 25 (15 goals and 10 assists) in 2023.
On the other side of the field, defender Shaq Moore won Nashville SC’s Defensive Player of the Year award. Across 28 appearances and 27 starts, Moore has helped anchor Nashville SC’s defense to eight shutouts and the fewest goals allowed in the league at 28. Across the league, he sits tied for third-most won tackles in the league at 44 (also, Rodrigues, San Jose Earthquakes).
Forward Sam Surridge’s 99th minute injury time goal against Club Américawon Nashville SC’s Goal of the Year award. Surridge’s crucial goal leveled the Round of 16 match to send Nashville SC to the penalty shootout, where the team eventually advanced to the Leagues Cup 2023 Quarterfinals. It also marked his debut goal after signing for the club only weeks prior as its third Designated Player.
Midfielder Jacob Shaffelburg won Nashville SC’s Newcomer of the Year award. The Canadian International joined Nashville SC midway through the 2022 campaign on loan from Toronto FC and was permanently acquired by the Tennessee side on a four-year contract through 2026 with an option for 2027. He has made 32 appearances for Nashville SC with 20 starts since then, and recorded five goals, three in the 2023 season, two of them being game-winning goals.
Defender Taylor Washington won Nashville SC’s Humanitarian of the Year award presented by AON. Washington is wholeheartedly dedicated to making a difference in every community in which he lives, including Nashville, by servicing underprivileged and underrepresented communities, as well as children in need. Throughout his life, Washington has made helping others his core mission, spending countless hours a week improving the lives of those in need with an emphasis in children and the homeless community.
Adem Sipić won Nashville SC’s Academy Player of the Year award after having a historic season by becoming the first Nashville SC Homegrown player in June 2023. He joined Nashville SC’s Academy in 2020 as a U-15 player and quickly moved up to compete with the U-17s as competition resumed in 2021. Sipić was called up this season to compete with Nashville SC’s MLS NEXT Pro affiliate squad, Huntsville City FC, where he appeared in 21 games for Huntsville City FC, with six starts and two goals. Sipić was also called up as the second Nashville SC player in history to compete in the MLS NEXT All-Star Game, where he recorded a brace through 45 minutes.
Midfielder Kemy Amiche won Huntsville City FC’s Player of the Year award. Amiche was on loan from Nashville SC with the Alabama side this season where he led in goal contributions with 14 (8 goals, 6 assists). Amiche was named MLS NEXT Pro Player of the Matchday 12 following a brace and an assist as a substitute against St. Louis CITY 2 on June 11.
On the Sporting Operations side, Jeff Robben and Sam Joyce won Employee of the Year and Rookie Employee of the Year respectively. Lindsey Funfgeld and Liv Ungurean won Employee of the Year and Rookie Employee of the Year respectively on the Front Office side.
Nashville SC will host the Seattle Sounders FC at 7:30 p.m. CT on Saturday, Sept. 30 at GEODIS Park. Tickets are available at www.NashvilleSC.com/Tickets.