Carlos Vela breaks goalscoring record with hat-trick to capture 2019 MLS Golden Boot
NEW YORK – Los Angeles Football Club forward Carlos Vela tonight won the 2019 Major League Soccer Golden Boot presented by Audi, establishing himself among the global game’s scoring elite, with an MLS record-breaking 34 goals this season. Vela scored a hat trick on MLS Decision Day presented by AT&T to decisively overtake the goalscoring record.
The 34 goals tallied by Vela is tied for third worldwide alongside the reigning Golden Boot winners from both La Liga (Lionel Messi - 36 goals for FC Barcelona) and Ligue 1 (Kylian Mbappé - 33 goals for Paris Saint-Germain).
With a goals-per-game average of 1.10, Vela finishes the season above Messi (1.05) and in near reach of Mbappé’s per-match production (1.13). Vela becomes the first player in MLS history to finish a season with a goals-per-game average higher than 1.0, joining Zlatan Ibrahimović who finished 2019 with a goals-per-game average of 1.03.
Vela broke numerous records this season, surpassing Atlanta United forward Josef Martínez’s mark of 31 goals in an MLS season set last year. Additionally, Vela’s 49 combined goals (34) and assists (15) shatters the MLS record of 38 set by Toronto FC forward Sebastian Giovinco in 2015.
By scoring 34 goals this year, Vela has raised $34,000 for the LAFC Academy through the ‘Audi Goals Drive Progress’ program, a multi-year initiative launch by Audi and dedicated to expanding the breadth of academy resources through contributions toward player education, housing and transportation. The funds raised by Vela – $1,000 per goal scored during the 2019 MLS season – will be used by the LAFC Academy to ensure young players are supported as they endeavor to maintain excellence on the pitch and in the classroom.
“Since 2015, Audi has been proud to support MLS and its journey to showcase the best soccer talent in the world,” said Loren Angelo, vice president of Marketing, Audi of America. “We’re thrilled to congratulate Carlos Vela on his Golden Boot win, and look forward to both his continued success on the pitch, but also the success of the ‘Audi Goals Drive Progress’ program and its pursuit to grow the sport of soccer in America.”
Vela helped LAFC break the MLS record for points in a season, finishing the year with 72 points (21-4-9 overall record). Vela was also named captain for the MLS All-Stars for the second consecutive year, leading the league’s biggest names against Atlético de Madrid at the 2019 MLS All-Star Game presented by Target.