Javier Morales may have secured his spot on the MLS All-Star team with his performance Saturday night.
Already among the league leaders in assists with seven, the Argentine midfielder scored on a free kick in the fourth minute to get things going for Real Salt Lake.
The MLS first 11, as voted on by fans, media, coaches and players, were released earlier this week. The remaining players will be determined by MLS All-Star coach Steve Nicol, in addition to two commissioner's picks to round out the 18-man roster for the July 25 match.
Last year, RSL defender Eddie Pope was named one of the two commissioner's picks in what turned out to be his final season.
Based on Morales' performance throughout the 2008 season, it's hard to imagine Nicol or commissioner Don Garber leaving him off the squad.
"I think he's incredibly worthy. It would be a stretch to comment on his chances because I don't know what Steve Nicol's thinking ... but it all sort of depends on his numbers are and what his tactics are," said RSL coach Jason Kreis.
"I don't think that should take anything away from Javier. If he gets selected or he doesn't get selected he's still been fantastic for us."
The rest of the MLS All-Star team is expected to be named early next week.
Asked if it's important that he be included on the team, Morales said through a translator, "I would like to be part of that team, but I know it's going to be difficult."With his goal against Columbus, Morales is now tied for the team-lead with three goals to compliment his seven assists.