Seattle Sounders FC midfielder Freddie Ljungberg was voted Major League Soccer's Player of the Week for Week 31 of the 2009 season. Ljungberg recorded two assists in the Sounders 3-2 victory over the Kansas City Wizards on Saturday, Oct. 17. The win clinched a playoff berth for Seattle, which became the first expansion team to reach the playoffs since the Chicago Fire in 1998. The victory allowed the Sounders to split the season series with the Wizards, after losing 1-0 on April 11. In their first meeting, the Sounders lost goalkeeper Kasey Keller to an ejection in the first half, but this time Keller made crucial saves in the second half. Behind Ljungberg's tireless work in the midfield and Keller's heroics, Seattle moved to 11-7-11 with 44 points and became the fifth team to qualify for the MLS Cup Playoffs.

In the 27th minute, Seattle defender Tyrone Marshall broke a scoreless tie after goalkeeper Kevin Hartman deflected away a Ljungberg corner kick toward the near post. Kansas City stormed back with two early second-half goals by Zoltan Hercegfalvi and Josh Wolff.

Sounders FC forward Roger Levesque entered the game in the 63rd minute and paid immediate dividends, scoring off a perfectly placed corner kick from Ljungberg in the 69th minute. Levesque's goal was his second in as many games.

Minutes later, Ljungberg attacked the Wizards' defense and found Nate Jaqua open at the six-yard line for what proved to be the game-winner. The Swedish-born Ljungberg has seven assists on the season, to go along with two goals. Ljungberg had not recorded a point since his assist in a 2-1 victory over the Houston Dynamo on July 11.

Although Seattle got off to a blazing open to the season, an August slump relegated Seattle to the middle of the pack in the Western Conference. After going 4-1-3 in their last eight matches, Sounders FC sit in fourth place in the West with 44 points. The Los Angeles Galaxy, Houston Dynamo and Chivas USA are tied atop the West with 45 points each.

Ljungberg, a member of the 2009 MLS All-Star team, spent 10 seasons in the English Premier League with Arsenal and West Ham United before joining the Sounders as their Designated Player prior to the 2009 season. This is the first MLS Player of the Week award for Ljungberg. Sounders FC close the season Saturday, Oct. 24, at 7:30 p.m., when they host FC Dallas at Qwest Field.

The Major League Soccer Player of the Week is selected each week of the MLS regular season by a panel of journalists from The North American Soccer Reporters (NASR). The group consists of members of print, television, radio and online media. More information and membership information can be found at http://www.soccerreporters.com.

2009 MLS Player of the Week Winners WEEK 1: Fredy Montero (Seattle Sounders FC) WEEK 2: Kasey Keller (Seattle Sounders FC) WEEK 3: Conor Casey (Colorado Rapids) WEEK 4: Donovan Ricketts (Los Angeles Galaxy) WEEK 5: Josh Wolff (Kansas City Wizards) WEEK 6: Javier Morales (Real Salt Lake) WEEK 7: Jaime Moreno (D.C. United) WEEK 8: Macoumba Kandji ( New York Red Bulls) WEEK 9: Josh Wolff (Kansas City Wizards) WEEK 10: Amado Guevara (Toronto FC) WEEK 11: Conor Casey (Colorado Rapids) WEEK 12: Taylor Twellman (New England Revolution) WEEK 13: Guillermo Barros Schelotto (Columbus Crew) WEEK 14: Omar Cummings (Colorado Rapids) WEEK 15: Nate Jaqua (Seattle Sounders FC) WEEK 16: Jeff Cunningham (FC Dallas) WEEK 17: Chad Barrett (Toronto FC) WEEK 18: Cuauhtémoc Blanco (Chicago Fire) WEEK 19: Yura Movsisyan (Real Salt Lake) WEEK 20: Jeff Cunningham (FC Dallas) WEEK 21: Conor Casey (Colorado Rapids) WEEK 22: Chad Marshall (Columbus Crew) WEEK 23: Kheli Dube (New England Revolution) WEEK 24: Pablo Campos (Real Salt Lake) WEEK 25: Josh Wolff (Kansas City Wizards) WEEK 26: Jeff Cunningham (FC Dallas) WEEK 27: Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo) WEEK 28: Shalrie Joseph (New England Revolution) WEEK 29: Landon Donovan (Los Angeles Galaxy) WEEK 30: Jeff Cunningham (FC Dallas) WEEK 31: Freddie Ljungberg (Seattle Sounders FC)