Atlanta Silverbacks forward REINALDO NAVIA has been named North American Soccer League Offensive Player of the Week, the league announced Monday afternoon.
The Chilean forward leads the league in goals scored, with a remarkable total of five in three games started. Navia’s most recent performance, one that featured a pair of goals in the Silverbacks’ 3-3 draw against Minnesota Stars FC on Saturday, earned him the weekly honors. It is the first time this season that a Silverbacks player has been recognized by the league as one of its Players of the Week.
“I feel very honored to be recognized by the league,” Navia said through a translator. “I’m enjoying myself at the moment, and I hope that I can continue scoring goals and helping the team collect points in the league.”
In his first season with the club, Navia has been at the forefront of a much-improved Silverbacks attack. As a team, the Silverbacks (0-4-0) are second in the league in scoring, and their total of eight goals is five more than their output through the first four games last season.
Navia, a former star at Club América in Mexico, has been efficient as well, needing only seven shots to tally his five goals this season. A late arrival to training camp, Navia only played 14 minutes in the season opener against San Antonio, meaning all five of his goals have come in the last three games, each of which he has started.
Through the first four games, the Silverbacks remain undefeated, however, the team is still seeking their first victory after settling for four straight draws. Navia is looking forward to the team’s first win, which he hopes comes this weekend in Minnesota.
“I always like scoring goals, but winning games is most important,” Navia said. “It was a tough result against Minnesota last week, but it’s good to know that we have another chance to play them this weekend to try to get our first win.”
Just a week after meeting in Atlanta, the Silverbacks and Stars will face off again on Saturday at 8:30 p.m. ET at the NSC Stadium in Blaine, Minn. The Silverbacks return home on May 12 to host FC Edmonton at Atlanta Silverbacks Park. To purchase tickets, visit atlantasilverbacks.com or call 404-969-4900.