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Loons believe Dayne St. Clair is an All-Star Game candidate

If the goalkeeper isn’t voted in, he can be added by United manager Adrian Heath

MLS: Minnesota United FC at New England Revolution
Minnesota United FC goalkeeper Dayne St Clair saves a shot during the second half against the New England Revolution on June 19, 2022, at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts.
Paul Rutherford / USA Today Sports
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ST. PAUL — “No!” screamed Dayne St. Clair after Minnesota United teammate Robin Lod scored a goal against him during Thursday’s training session in Blaine. The Loons goalkeeper added an expletive to express his spiking frustration.

It doesn’t matter whether it’s a practice, an MLS match, a game of dominoes or in Settlers of Catan, St. Clair can’t stand losing.

“I think this word gets thrown around too much,” Loons defender Brent Kallman said, “but he’s the prime example of it: He’s an absolute gamer. You play cards with him, dominoes, anything like that. He’s very good at everything.”

And, Kallman added, “He’s not exactly a quiet winner.”

Without him, the Loons are clinging to one of the final playoff spots with two games remaining.
With Minnesota’s playoff positioning slipping in three straight scoreless losses, a goal and a point will be precious. But they lost points from a winning position at home.
After a slow start, the Loons ascended to be one of the league’s best through late August, netting 26 out of the next 33 points during that stretch.
Reynoso, who has a team-high 10 goals, tweaked his right ankle before halftime of last Saturday’s 3-0 loss to FC Dallas.
Third-place Minnesota (13-9-5) travels to sixth-place Real Salt Lake (10-8-9) for an 8:30 p.m. CT kickoff Wednesday at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah.
Matt Navratil, a 26-year-old from Burnsville, Minnesota, is a diehard Loons fan and a season-ticket holder who travels with his parents, Scott and Chris, to a few road games each season.
The Loons dealt with a steady stream of pressure, but made the most of their few opportunities to take all three points on the road.
One of Dayne St. Clair’s first soccer memories is from roughly 20 years ago with him juggling a plastic balloon at his grandmother’s home in the Toronto area. The young Canadian wasn’t yet good enough with his feet to keep a heavier soccer ball aloft; he needed an inflatable orb that would hang in the air a bit longer.
After signing a 2½-year contract with MNUFC through the 2024 season, with a club option for 2025, the 28-year-old Paraguayan has played in three games — an international friendly versus Everton, plus coming off the bench in two MLS games, wins over Houston and Portland.
Minnesota United is 6-2-0 this season when he has a goal or assist, including four wins amid their current six-game unbeaten streak.

St. Clair had something to say to that, too.


“To be fair, he’ll tell you — I talk before I win,” the goalie said. “I’m a consistent (trash) talker.”

The Loons are hoping their 25-year-old goalie can win a spot in the starting lineup for the MLS All-Star Game at Allianz Field on Aug. 10. St. Clair’s form will be key to earning the nod, and MNUFC’s regular season marches on with a road match at Inter Miami coming at 7 p.m. Saturday.

Fan voting for 12 spots opened Tuesday and closes July 1. If St. Clair isn’t in that group, Loons manager and MLS All-Star head coach Adrian Heath appears poised to include him in his 12 selections. Commissioner Don Garber has two additional picks to round out the 26-player roster for the showcase against All-Stars from Mexico’s Liga MX.

“Fans have a large part part of voting for that,” St. Clair said Thursday. “Hopefully, I’m getting those votes, because, I think, sometimes it’s tough. Some of the bigger teams have a lot more fans. Some guys get it where maybe someone else’s (play) is a little bit more deserved. I’m not saying that’s a situation for myself.”

New York City’s Sean Johnson leads MLS with eight clean sheets, and Philadelphia standout Andre Blake is part of a pack with six. St. Clair has three shutouts but is only three decimal points behind Johnson and Toronto’s Alex Bono in expected goals minus goals allowed league-wide.

MLS: New York City FC at Minnesota United FC
Minnesota United goalkeeper Dayne St. Clair (97) reacts during the first half against the New York City FC on May 28 at Allianz Field in St. Paul.
Matt Krohn/USA Today Sports

Heath said St. Clair — a member of Canada’s World Cup-bound national team — “certainly be in” the group of top three ‘keepers in MLS this season. “Maybe we’d be biased because we see him every day and we know what he can do,” he acknowledged.

St. Clair is coming off his worst game of the season, a 2-1 loss to New England on Sunday. St. Clair said he made a mistake to let Dylan Borrero’s slow, deflected shot go underneath him. Then Revolution star Gustavo Bou struck a sensational long-range free kick for the winning goal.

“It touched my hand, hits off the post,” St. Clair said of Bou’s strike. “I think maybe if I’m a yard higher … it’s a save. It’s one of those ones: It’s either a great save or a great goal. … Maybe it’s a little bit harsh on myself to say that I can save that, but I think that’s a standard I want to hold on myself.”


Heath said he will go over his process for selecting those 12 All-Stars during the Loons’ upcoming road trip. He identified in-house candidates Lod, who has a team-high six goals, center back Bakaye Dibassy and central attacking midfielder Emanuel Reynoso.


Minnesota United is 1-5-1 in its past seven games with only five goals scored. Heath said the Loons aim is to get four points (a win and draw) in its two-game road trip to Inter Miami and L.A. Galaxy on Wednesday. … Minnesota and Miami will face each other for the first time. They have identical 5-7-3 records this season…. MNUFC’s first team and staff will travel directly from Florida to California between the matches. … Forward Abu Danladi (thigh) returned to Loons’ training this week. The first pick in the 2017 MLS SuperDraft has one goal this season. Jeremy Ebobisse, the fourth pick in that draft, is tied for the league lead with nine goals.


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