The U.S. Soccer Federation announced today that former head coach Bob Bradley and forward Brian McBride joined Women’s National Team legend Kristine Lilly as the three inductees to the National Soccer Hall of Fame’s 2014 class.
The first head coach in Fire history, Bradley is largely credited for assembling the team’s inaugural roster which went on to win an unprecedented double, winning both MLS Cup and the U.S. Open Cup in the club’s 1998 expansion season. The feat has yet to be matched by an MLS expansion club.
Having coached the Fire from 1998-2002, Bradley guided the club to three of its six domestic titles, nearly matching the ’98 double in 2000 by winning that year’s U.S. Open Cup title a week after falling finishing as runners-up in MLS Cup.
Bradley of course moved on to coach MetroStars from 2003-2005 before guiding Chivas USA to success in 2006. Following Bruce Arena’s departure from as U.S. Men’s National Team coach, Bradley was given the job late that year. He successfully helped the U.S. qualify for its sixth successive World Cup in 2010 where the side advanced from group play for just the fourth time in team history.
Bradley moved on to coach the Egyptian national team in 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifying, coming up just short on helping the Pharoah’s make it to Brazil.
Bradley continued to be a pioneer for American soccer coaches earlier this year when he took over the job at Norwegian side Stabaek.
Bradley is one of seven members of the club’s Ring of Fire.
One of the greatest players in American soccer history, Brian McBride goes into the Hall of Fame having amassed 30 goals in 95 international appearances for the U.S. Men’s National Team.
After a short stint with German side VfL Wolfsburg in 1994-95, McBride returned to launch Major League Soccer, spending eight years with the Columbus Crew from 1996-2003.
In that time, he solidified his place as the USMNT’s top target forward, while also becoming the first American to score in two different World Cups. The Buffalo Grove product’s pair of game winning goals against Portugal and Mexico were instrumental in the U.S team’s run to the quarterfinals at the 2002 FIFA World Cup.
After loan stints to Preston North End and Everton during his time with the Crew, McBride returned to England on a full-time basis, signing with Fulham FC in 2004. He would go on to become a fan-favorite with the West London club and was named captain of the side in 2007.
During his time with Fulham, McBride also helped the U.S. qualify for the 2006 FIFA World Cup and joined an exclusive group of American players to play in three different World Cups.
Coming up on the end of his career, McBride desired to close out his career in his hometown of Chicago and joined the Fire in 2008. He went on to tally 18 goals in 59 matches in two and a half seasons for the Men in Red before retiring at the end of the 2010 season.
Late last year, McBride was named along to U.S. Soccer’s All-Time Best XI and was also acknowledged as one of the Top 15 players in Fire history in 2012.
McBride and Bradley become the second and third men with Fire ties to go into the National Soccer Hall of Fame after Wynalda was inducted as a Fire player despite only playing for the team for half a season in 2001.