Corkman Alan Kelly named MLS Referee of the Year for the third time in four years

Fri, Nov 30 2018

Kelly in action in his League of Ireland days. Credit: Steve Alfred (ETPhotos)

Corkman Alan Kelly has been named Major League Soccer’s Referee of the Year for the third time in four years, solidifying his position as the United States’ top official.

The 43-year-old was also recognised as the league’s top official in 2015 and 2016, and will take charge of its showpiece event, the MLS Cup, for the second time on December 6th.

Kelly won more than half of the player vote with 54.49%, topped the media vote with 43.14% and was joint-first in the club vote with 41.67%, for an overall average of 46.43%.

The former schoolboy footballer with Avondale United and Cork City refereed in the League of Ireland for 15 years before leaving to take up a technical position in MLS in 2014.

He was appointed to the FIFA list in 2002 and has gone on to officiate top level international games in qualification for the 2006, 2010 and 2014 World Cups.

“I’m delighted to see Alan Kelly named as our MLS Referee of the Year and Joe Fletcher as our MLS Assistant Referee of the Year,” PRO General Manager Howard Webb said in a statement.

“They are excellent ambassadors for PRO and provide strong examples of the professionalism of our group, both domestically and internationally.

“Joe and Alan achieved high standards in all facets of their work, and PRO continues to make great strides in our accuracy, our impact on key moments and in our expanding influence in the Video Review realm.”