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The case for David Bingham

Quakes goaltender David Bingham was selected to his first All-Star Game this season. While it might be a stretch to call him the best goalie in Major League Soccer, it isn't outside the realm of reality to picture the 26-year-old playing outside of MLS.

Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

At the point of his All-Star selection, Bingham was ranked fifth in MLS with a save percentage of 74.1 percent, tied for sixth with 60 saves and tied for ninth with four shutouts. This among all MLS goalkeepers.

After paying his dues throughout the MLS goalkeeping ranks, Bingham was finally rewarded last season when he became the Quakes full-time starter. Since earning the starting job, he hasn't looked back, playing in over 2,000 consecutive minutes for San Jose. He's racked up numerous honors since the trek began — in 2015, he played every minute of the season, finishing third in the league with 12 shutouts, which also tied Pat Onstad's franchise shutout record set in 2005. Bingham posted a shutout streak that spanned nearly one month, or 450 minutes from Aug. 8 through Sept. 5. His 11 goals-allowed at Avaya Stadium were good enough for the fewest amount allowed at home of any keeper in the league.

This season, Bingham made his 50th career start for the club, which came during the June edition of the storied California Clasico. Finally, he became the youngest goalkeeper in franchise history to reach 5,000 minutes played last month.

Internationally, Bingham earned his first cap for the U.S. Men's National Team, posting a 1-0 shutout performance against Canada in February.

Bingham has clearly demonstrated his abilities to serve as a proficient shot stopper, but it could perhaps be his command of the penalty area that separates him from all over MLS goaltenders — even Tim Howard — additionally, few would argue there was a more consistent goalkeeper during the first half of the season.

According to ESPN Stats & Information, Bingham has posted the highest combined number of punches and catches per 90 minutes of any goalkeeper in Major League Soccer. Skeptics might point toward the defense Bingham has in front of him and assign large credit to the fact, however, San Jose have struggled through most of the current campaign with an injury-plagued back line.

Most important to note is the immense maturity Bingham has displayed in the development of his game — in the beginning, he seemed content chasing after anything which entered his airspace. There were some instances where he appeared to serve as a danger to his teammates as he'd attempt to plow through them to secure a loose ball.

The sky's the limit for Bingham, and it shouldn't be hard to imagine that with the proper coaching and direction, he could end up taking the same path to the Premier League as the aforementioned Howard.