While it is widely-felt that Keane is the best DP signing in league history, a recent report on MLSSoccer.com ranked the top-10 best designated players in league history and included one current member of New York City FC and two former New York Red Bulls.
Now in his second year with NYCFC, David Villa was ranked No. 5. In his two seasons with the 2015 expansion side, the Spaniard has proven his star power in New York and across the league. He followed his 18 goal performance in 2015 with 23 goals this past season, leading New York City to its first playoff appearance. He is also a finalist for Most Valuable Player.
At No. 4 on the list is Thierry Henry. During his four-and-a-half seasons with the Red Bulls, the former Arsenal and Barcelona star scored 51 goals with a season high 15 tallies in 2012. While the Frenchman won numerous league, continental and world titles during his time in European football and with the French national team, he was unable to bring a league title to New York. The only silverware won during his time with the Red Bulls was the 2013 Supporters’ Shield.
The Red Bulls second-ever designated player signing, Juan Pablo Angel, is ranked at No. 7. After eight seasons with Aston Villa, Angel made the move to Major League Soccer. The highlight of his time with New York came in 2008, when he helped lead the Red Bulls to MLS Cup, where the team lost to Columbus Crew 3-1.
He would finishes in career in New York with 58 regular season league goals, and after four seasons with the Red Bulls, he would spend three more years in MLS, one with LA Galaxy and two with Chivas USA.