Brian McBride

Brian Robert McBride (born June 19, 1972) is an American retired soccer player who played as a forward for the Columbus Crew, Fulham and the Chicago Fire and is the fifth highest all-time leading goalscorer for the United States national team.

Brian McBride
McBride in 2006
Personal information
Full name Brian Robert McBride[1]
Date of birth (1972-06-19) June 19, 1972
Place of birth Arlington Heights, Illinois, United States
Height 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Playing position Striker
College career
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1990–1993 St. Louis Billikens 89 (72)
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1994 Milwaukee Rampage 18 (17)
1994–1995 VfL Wolfsburg 18 (2)
1996–2003 Columbus Crew 161 (62)
2000–2001Preston North End (loan) 9 (1)
2003Everton (loan) 8 (4)
2004–2008 Fulham 140 (33)
2008–2010 Chicago Fire 59 (18)
2012 Wembley 0 (0)
Total 413 (137)
National team
1993–2006 United States 95 (30)
2008 United States U23 5 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

For much of his career, he played in Europe. During his time with Fulham, McBride became a fan favorite, as well as team captain. He would eventually become 'Player of the Season' two times.[2] After leaving the club, they renamed the sports bar at Craven Cottage McBride's in his honor.[3][4][5]

Early career

High School and college

Born in Arlington Heights, Illinois, McBride played varsity soccer at Buffalo Grove High School, under coach John Erfort, where he led the Bison to the Illinois state championship in 1988, his junior year. During a playoff game against Fremd, McBride broke his nose in the first half, but came back into the game to score the game-winning goal. In his four years in high school, he scored 80 goals, 33 as a senior despite playing his senior season as a defender.[6] In the regional final against Stevenson High School his senior season, McBride played goalkeeper, stopping four of eight penalty kicks and running up the other end to score five on the counterattack after the game ended tied.[7] McBride was also named an All-American by Parade Magazine.[6] Later, as a professional, he signed a contract with Nike with the condition that the boys' varsity soccer team receive new uniforms every two years.

McBride had an illustrious career with Saint Louis University, from which he graduated in 1993. In his four seasons with the Billikens, he played (and started) in 89 games, and set career records for goals (72), assists (40) and total points (184).[6] While at school, McBride was a 1992 second team and a 1993 first-team All-American.[8][9] He also was named Most Valuable Player of the Great Midwest Conference three years straight, as well as being named to the All-Conference first-team during this stretch. He trained at the world-famous Magna Fitness Center. After being such a versatile player in his amateur career, McBride decided to become a striker at the professional level. Craig Burley warned McBride that he should expect to get clattered playing that position.[10]

McBride is one of 22 college players to be part of the 40-40 club, having both 40 goals and 40 assists in their college career.[11]

Club career

Milwaukee Rampage

McBride briefly played for the minor league Milwaukee Rampage. In 18 games, he scored 17 goals and assisted another 18. That year also saw Tony Sanneh playing with the Rampage. Both Sanneh and McBride would play professionally in Germany, in MLS and on the U.S. men's national team.

They linked up for a historic goal at the 2002 FIFA World Cup. In a game against Portugal, Sanneh, playing right back, played a cross into the box which McBride put into the top corner. After the game, McBride mentioned, "We joked about it in the locker room, it is a play we have done a thousand times [while teammates with the Milwaukee Rampage]. "I took a step in at the far post and lost my marker. He delivered a beautiful cross and I knocked it home."[12]

VfL Wolfsburg

In 1994, McBride left the United States to ply his trade in Germany.[13] At the time, VfL Wolfsburg played in the German Second Division and provided several aspiring American players an opportunity to play soccer in Europe. These included Chad Deering, Claudio Reyna and Mike Lapper, as well as McBride. McBride struggled to find playing time with the club and also had difficulty scoring. However, one of his two goals came in a 2–1 victory over Bayern Munich's reserve team in the DFB-Pokal quarterfinals – Wolfsburg would go on to reach the final, although McBride did not feature. At the end of the season, McBride gained a release from Wolfsburg and when MLS was created, chose to return to play in the United States.

Columbus Crew

McBride returned to America in 1996 for the inaugural season of Major League Soccer, for whom he was the first overall pick of the MLS Inaugural Draft. McBride played eight years with the Columbus Crew, scoring 62 goals (no longer tied for the club record with Jeff Cunningham) and 45 assists in 161 league games, before his move to England. In 2005, he was named to the MLS All-Time Best XI.

In 2011, the Crew honored McBride by naming him the inaugural member of its Circle of Honor.

Loan spells

Whilst playing for Columbus, McBride had two loan spells in England. The first came in 2000 when McBride played for Preston North End, then managed by David Moyes. While McBride played well for the club, he sat out several games after having a blood clot surgically removed from his arm, which consisted of having a rib removed.[14] The clot came as a result of a hard collision McBride had suffered during his first game with Preston. As McBride's loan spell came to an end, Preston attempted to purchase his contract from MLS for $1.8 million. MLS rejected it, considering McBride to be worth twice that amount.[15] Two years later, Premier League club Everton were beginning to slide down the table. David Moyes, by then with Everton, remembered McBride's success with Preston and sought the forward's services. During McBride's three months with the club, he did not disappoint Moyes, scoring four goals in eight games, including his first game with the club, a 4–3 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur. He made close friends during the short time with players such as Leon Osman (with whom he still plays soccer) and Richard Wright.[16] Everton, unlike Preston, merely sought to extend McBride's loan period, but MLS rejected it, preferring a transfer over an extended loan for McBride.[17]


In January 2004, Premier League club Fulham bought McBride's rights from MLS for $1.5 million. He played 18 games during the last half of the 2003–04 season, scoring a total of five goals. His scoring pace remained steady through the next two seasons. In 2004–05, he played 31 league games and six cup games, scoring six league and three cup goals. In 2005–06, he played 38 league games and one cup game, scoring 10 league goals and one cup goal. McBride's original contract with Fulham continued only through the 2005–06 season. However, on March 10, 2006, he signed a one-year extension which took him through the end of the 2006–07 season. On February 2, 2007, he signed yet another one-year extension, taking him through the 2007–2008 season. He has a reputation as a battler with a high work rate, a trait prized in English soccer.

McBride was Fulham's top scorer for their 2006–07 Premier League campaign with twelve goals to his name. He was given Fulham's captaincy in August 2007.[18]

When scoring the opening goal in a home match against Middlesbrough on August 18, 2007, McBride dislocated his kneecap. He wouldn't make his return to action until a friendly against Cardiff City in late January 2008, and resumed his Premier League duties as a substitute against Aston Villa on February 3, 2008.[19] McBride scored his first goal since his injury against Everton at Craven Cottage on March 16, 2008, in a 1–0 victory for Fulham.[20][21] The then-Fulham manager Chris Coleman commented it was such a shame that McBride hadn't been 'discovered' earlier in his career, and played more in England.

After scoring twelve goals in 2006–07 season which helped Fulham retain their Premier League status, on May 14, 2007, McBride won the Club's Player of the Year award. He won it again in 2008, and became such a popular figure that the club renamed a bar inside Craven Cottage "McBride's" in June 2009.[3][4][5]

On May 28, 2008, McBride announced that he would be leaving Fulham to return to the United States to play in MLS.[22]

Chicago Fire

Following the end of his one-year contract extension, McBride decided to return to the United States to end his career in MLS. He expressed his desire to play for Chicago, his hometown. However, Toronto FC held the top spot in the allocation order, the process by which U.S. National Team players returning to MLS find teams in the league.

On July 30, 2008, the top spot in the allocation order was traded to the Chicago Fire for Chad Barrett, a first round pick in the MLS SuperDraft and conditional future considerations. The Fire used the top spot to obtain McBride. He made his Fire debut on August 16, 2008, coming on as a second-half substitute against D.C. United. McBride scored his first goal against Houston Dynamo. McBride scored the first goal in the MLS Playoff Eastern Conference Championship against the Columbus Crew, his former club. However, Chicago lost that game 2–1 and was kept from being in the MLS Playoff final.

McBride scored nine goals during the 2009 season, including two goals in the three SuperLiga games in which he played.

On September 3, 2010, McBride announced that he would retire following the 2010 MLS season. McBride scored his 80th career goal (in MLS) during his final match before being substituted off to a standing ovation.[23]


In June 2012, he was one of several former professional players who agreed to join Wembley to play in their FA Cup campaign for the new season. McBride and fellow former internationals Ray Parlour, Martin Keown, Claudio Caniggia, Jaime Moreno, Danny Dichio and Graeme Le Saux, plus David Seaman (goalkeeping coach) and former England manager Terry Venables (technical advisor), came out of retirement to play for Wembley.[24] They were knocked out in a replay by Uxbridge after initially setting up the tie by knocking Langford out in the previous round.[25]

International career

McBride was a significant player for the United States national team, earning 96 caps and scoring 30 goals in his senior international career. He made his national team debut in 1993, though he was not a member of the squad for the 1994 FIFA World Cup.[6] He is the first-ever spokesperson for the Central Ohio Diabetes Association and donated $100 to the association for every goal and assist he tallied for the U.S. National Team.[6]

He was part of the U.S. team that played at the 1998, 2002, and 2006 FIFA World Cups. He scored at the 1998 and 2002 tournaments and in doing so, became the first American player to score at two World Cups. He was the only American player that scored in the tournament, which was in a 2–1 defeat to Iran. Fellow Landon Donovan and Clint Dempsey have since equaled this feat, the latter surpassing them with three. Overall McBride is fourth behind Bert Patenaude, Dempsey and Donovan for the most World Cup goals for an American with three.

On May 2, 2006, McBride was named to the U.S. roster for his third consecutive World Cup. At the 2006 World Cup, McBride was severely bloodied in a group stage match against Italy after being elbowed in the face by Daniele De Rossi. He needed three stitches. As punishment, De Rossi was banned for four matches and fined CHF 10,000.[26] Following the end of the tournament, McBride announced his retirement from international duty on July 26, 2006.[27]

In 2008 McBride briefly came out of international retirement after being named as one of the three overage players on the U.S. team for the 2008 Beijing Olympics and served as captain as the team finished in third place in the group stage for their group.[28][29]


McBride established the Brian McBride Soccer Academy which is based in Lake Zurich, Illinois.

Career statistics


As of November 14, 2011

Club performance League Cup League Cup Continental Total
SeasonClubLeague AppsGoals AppsGoals AppsGoals AppsGoals AppsGoals
Germany League DFB-Pokal Other Europe Total
1994–95VfL Wolfsburg2. Bundesliga182000000182
United States League Open Cup League Cup North America Total
1996Columbus CrewMajor League Soccer28170032003119
England League FA Cup League Cup Europe Total
2000–01Preston North EndFirst Division9100000091
United States League Open Cup League Cup North America Total
2001Columbus CrewMajor League Soccer151200000171
England League FA Cup League Cup Europe Total
2002–03EvertonPremier League8400000084
United States League Open Cup League Cup North America Total
2003Columbus CrewMajor League Soccer24120000002412
England League FA Cup League Cup Europe Total
2003–04FulhamPremier League164310000195
United States League Open Cup League Cup North America Total
2008Chicago FireMajor League Soccer115003100146
Total Germany 182000000182
United States 2208013628100026196
England 1573894540017141
Career total 3951202210331400450144

International goals



United States

Columbus Crew



  1. Hugman, Barry J. (2005). The PFA Premier & Football League Players' Records 1946–2005. Queen Anne Press. p. 386. ISBN 1-85291-665-6.
  2. "Fulhamerica: U.S. Players Who Have Passed Through Craven Cottage". U.S. Soccer. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  3. Lewis, Brian (June 23, 2009). "Fulham renames pub after Brian McBride". New York Post. Archived from the original on October 21, 2012. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  4. "In McBride's Honor". Fulham F.C. June 17, 2009. Retrieved November 27, 2013. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  5. "McBride's". Fulham F.C. Archived from the original on December 1, 2013. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  6. "Biography". US Soccer. Archived from the original on September 30, 2007. Retrieved July 19, 2007.
  7. "McBride sets standard as Player of Year". Chicago Sun-Times. November 4, 1989.
  8. "1992 All Americans". NSCAA. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  9. "1993 All Americans". NSCAA. Archived from the original on June 15, 2011. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  11. "Players With 40 Goals and 40 Assists". Division I Men's Soccer Records (PDF) (19th ed.). Indianapolis: NCAA. August 10, 2018. pp. 7–8. Retrieved December 28, 2018.
  12. "USA vs. Portugal Game Story". USA Today. June 5, 2002. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  13. "Brian McBride on Past, Present and Future". Fulham Official Website. January 25, 2008. Retrieved April 18, 2014.
  14. Carlisle, Jeff (September 3, 2010). "An American Trailblazer". ESPN. Retrieved September 4, 2010.
  15. "McBride's swan song for Preston North End to come Wednesday against Wolverhampton". Soccer Times. March 8, 2001. Archived from the original on September 30, 2007. Retrieved January 11, 2008.
  16. "Christmas hangover carries into new year". February 2, 2003. Archived from the original on April 18, 2004. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  17. "McBride to leave Everton". BBC. March 20, 2003. Retrieved January 11, 2008.
  18. "Club Captain". Fulham F.C. August 8, 2007. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  19. "Match Stats". Fox Sports. February 3, 2008. Retrieved February 4, 2008.
  20. Lewis, Aimee (March 16, 2008). "Fulham 1–0 Everton". BBC Sport. Retrieved March 16, 2008.
  21. Edwards, Ian (March 16, 2008). "EPL Extra Time: McBride leading Fulham down the comeback trail". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved June 12, 2015.
  22. "Fulham hit by McBride blow as striker goes home". ESPN. May 28, 2008. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  23. "Ljungberg steals show in McBride, Brown farewell". October 24, 2010. Retrieved October 24, 2010.
  24. "Terry Venables' Wembley FC recruit former stars for FA Cup". BBC Sport. June 21, 2012. Retrieved June 22, 2012.
  25. "VIDEO: Wembley Cup dream over". August 30, 2012. Retrieved July 17, 2013.
  26. "Italy's De Rossi gets four-match ban from FIFA". ESPN. June 23, 2006. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  27. "McBride, second leading scorer in U.S. history, retires". ESPN. July 26, 2006. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  28. "McBride to lead US football Beijing Olympic challenge". The Sydney Morning Herald. July 18, 2008. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  29. "U.S. Men's Olympic Team Ties Ivory Coast 0–0 in Hong Kong in Warm-Up Match". United States Soccer Federation. July 30, 2008. Archived from the original on December 16, 2009. Retrieved November 27, 2013.
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Luís Boa Morte
Fulham captain
Succeeded by
Danny Murphy
Preceded by
C. J. Brown
Chicago Fire captain
Succeeded by
Logan Pause
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