Former Barcelona striker David Villa has been awarded the trophy for the Major League Soccer’s Most Valuable Player for the 2016 season.

Villa scored 23 goals and added 4 assists for New York City FC helping them to qualify for the playoffs for the first time ever. Only Bradley Wright-Phillips of the New York Red Bulls scored more goals than Villa over the season as he pushed NYCFC to a second place finish.

“I’m very proud to represent NYCFC and to receive this award,” Villa said. “It’s a big day for me because this is one of the things I said I wanted to do when I came here two years ago.”

“This is an important day in my career – this is an important moment for me. This award is for the best player in this amazing league which has many quality players so this is a very happy and proud day for me.”

35-year old Villa received 26% of the vote, ahead of Wright-Phillips who had 19% and Red Bulls’ Sacha Kljestan, who had 17.6%.

The previous holder of the award was Sebastian Giovinco, who came 4th this year.