AVE MARIA, Fla. -- Long one of the unsung players of the Chicago Fire, Patrick Nyarko has started to get his recognition.
After three straight seasons of finishing as the team leader in assists, the Ghanaian winger was named Section 8 Chicago’s 2012 Supporters Player of the Year last November.
Thursday night he’ll be honored as Fire Player of the Year at the 25th Annual Comcast SportsNet Awards dinner benefiting the March of Dimes (Premiers at 11pm CT on CSN Chicago).
Nyarko will join the likes of the Bulls Richard Hamilton, the Bears Roberto Garza and Chicago baseball legends Frank Thomas and Ernie Banks in being honored.
“It’s a good thing when people are noticing what you do,” Nyarko told Chicago-Fire.com before leaving Ave Maria, Fla. “But as anyone that knows me can tell you, I’m all about what the team did last year. This whole thing wouldn’t have been possible for me if the team didn’t do well last season.
“We have a great group of guys that all work hard and join the cause to make it a successful year and it all trickles down.”
Admittedly shy in his demeanor, Nyarko said he was somewhat nervous about his acceptance speech but did get practice with his earlier award last year.
“I’ve gotten better over the years and winning the Section 8 award definitely helped me. I think I came up with something simple and creative [for tonight] but if I get stuck, I’ll just go back to basics.
Though he won’t be in attendance, Fire head coach Frank Klopas will also be honored as Fire Legend of the Year.