FC Cincinnati’s Luciano Acosta wins the 2023 Landon Donovan MVP Award

Two days after his team advanced in the 2023 MLS Cup Playoffs, Luciano Acosta made a statement that was both highly anticipated and largely expected:

“I had a lot of people to say thank you to, but I want to start with my family … I want to share (the award) with my teammates … I am very proud of my teammates. And the last thing is, nothing is done yet … We go for more,” Lucho Acosta, the award winner said during a 1 p.m. press conference.

On Monday, MLS announced that Acosta received the 2023 Landon Donovan Most Valuable Player Award. Acosta led the voting amongst the players, media and clubs, garnering 60.37 percent of the overall vote. Acosta took the plurality of the vote over finalists Dénis Bouanga from LAFC and Atlanta United’s Thiago Almada.

“He’s a true leader in every sense of the word … No one deserves this honor more,” FC Cincinnati Owner Carl Lindner III said during the press conference.”

In his third year with the club, Acosta notched 17 goals and 10 assists, leading FC Cincinnati in both and captaining the team to their first Supporters’ Shield. The 27-goal contributions tied him for the league lead and were a personal best since his 10 goals and 15 assists with D.C. United in 2018.

Acosta also added a goal and an assist in three Leagues Cup matches, as well as a goal and an assist in five U.S. Open Cup matches. In all competitions, Acosta has 20 goals and 14 assists over 43 matches this season.

His contract extension late this season indicated what Lucho means to the team and the turnaround in FC Cincinnati’s fortunes. His goal contributions have increased yearly since his transfer to FC Cincinnati in 2021, and the Orange & Blue have gone from cellar dwellers to MLS Cup contenders in that short span.

Acosta’s accomplishment makes him the fourth Argentinian player to win the MVP award and the first since Diego Valeri in 2017.

This personal achievement adds to FC Cincinnati’s golden 2023 season. Earlier in the postseason, the league named Matt Miazga MLS Defender of the Year and Pat Noonan Sigi Schmid Coach of the Year. Acosta also received recognition for the MLS Goal of the Year, scored against Charlotte FC in September, while goalkeeper Roman Celentano received the MLS Save of the Year.

To Top