The boys over at The Original Winger have posted a collection of misty–and not so misty–memories of MLS Cup Finals past from names you know like Twellman, Conrad, Kljestan, Rogers, and Rimando.
Here’s one of our favorites, from–who else–Jimmy Conrad (video of the moment he describes is above):
It was a Sunday, mid-morning, and I was wearing Wizards blue from top to bottom. My team was tied 1-1 after exchanging goals in the first 20 minutes of the championship game of MLS in the 2004 season, which is known in some circles as the MLS Cup, but more was yet to come. An innocent throw-in from my teammate, Davy Arnaud, came towards me in slow motion and it was being heavily pressured by the “Armenian Assassin,” Alecko Eskandarian, from the New York Yankees of Major League Soccer, D.C. United. As the ball took a bounce, I had a number of different decisions that I could have made but I decided to keep possession and play it over the head of Mr. Eskandarian back to my wide-open teammate who had acres of space in front of him. The ball looked and felt good as it came off of my foot but it hit the outstretched arm of the charging representative from the nation’s capitol, who was, of course, covered in all black, and landed in his path as he raced into goal all alone with only Kansas City goalkeeper, Bo Oshoniyi, to beat. With no whistle being blown by the center referee or his assistants, Alecko coolly slotted the ball into the back of the net to give his team the lead that they would never relinquish, which led to them being crowned champions and me carrying the burden of letting my team down in the biggest game of the year.
The moral of the story: Cheaters do prosper. Thanks for ruining my life, Alecko.
For the rest of the strolls down memory lane, most of them much more positive than Conrad’s, visit The Original Winger.