2010 Chicago Fire Goal of the Year Voting Bracket: Day 4
The last of the regions open up play today as #2 Brian McBride (10/8 vs. Columbus) takes on #3 Marco Pappa (6/27 at New England) in the Nowak Bracket.
THE MATCHUP: The team’s top two scorers this season, McBride and Pappa combined for seven entries in the tournament with this being the first of three first round matchups the two will encounter with each other over the next week.
With retirement looming, McBride’s goal against his former team on the night of the club’s 13th anniversary was thought by many to be his last professional goal. Though he proved “many” wrong the next week by scoring at Chivas, McBride’s 53rd minute goal was the product of some great one-two passing on the right between Patrick Nyarko, Freddie Ljungberg and Steven Kinney. In what has become a staple of his play, Nyarko’s low, centering cross found the ever opportunistic McBride at the six, who put his former side away with a one-time redirection past Crew keeper William Hesmer.
What can be said about Marco Pappa’s blast against New England? Perhaps deserving of a #1 or #2 seed, the Guatemalan international’s had an embarrassment of riches as it came to goals this year, so the selection committee had to give this one a #3 seed.
In the club’s first game back from the 18-day World Cup break, Pappa’s powerful strike from distance was the bright spot in what was an otherwise rather dull game. Though Revolution goalkeeper Matt Reis got a hand to the shot, the velocity on 30 yard effort was too much for the veteran to handle and gave the Fire all they needed in a 1-0 victory.
The winner of this matchup will advance to the Nowak Final where they’ll take on the winner of #1 Collins John free kick (9/4 vs. LA) and #4 Freddie Ljungberg finish (9/29 at San Jose) on November 24.