MLS Cup 2000

MLS Cup 2000 was the fifth edition of the MLS Cup, the championship match of Major League Soccer (MLS), which took place on October 15, 2000, at Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium in Washington, D.C. It was contested by the Kansas City Wizards and Chicago Fire to decide the champion of the 2000 MLS season. Kansas City became the first Western Conference team to win the MLS Cup, with the lone goal of the match scored in the 11th minute by Miklos Molnar. It was also the first MLS Cup to not feature a team from the Eastern Conference club, due to the three-division system used from 2000 to 2001.

MLS Cup 2000
EventMLS Cup
DateOctober 15, 2000
VenueRobert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium, Washington, D.C., US
Man of the MatchTony Meola
(Kansas City Wizards)
Attendance39,159
WeatherSunny, 77 °F (25 °C)

The match was watched by 39,159 spectators and broadcast nationally on ABC with commentary by Jack Edwards and Ty Keough.

Venue

Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium in Washington, D.C., the home of D.C. United, was chosen to host MLS Cup 2000. It previously hosted MLS Cup 1997, in which the hosts won their second league championship, as well as international competitions like the 1994 FIFA World Cup and 1996 Olympics men's soccer tournament.[1] The 2000 final was the first MLS final to not have D.C. United competing in it, as the team failed to qualify for the playoffs.[2]

At the time of the match in October 2000, seating capacity of the stadium was 56,454 spectators. RFK Stadium was officially announced as the host on February 23, 2000, beating out the favored bid from Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida,[3] which was complicated by a scheduling conflict with a college football team.[4][5]

Match

Overview

The match began with Chicago on the offensive early, with Ante Razov and Hristo Stoitchkov creating several attempts within the first ten minutes. In the 11th minute, however, Wizards midfielder Chris Klein stole the ball from Chicago's Diego Gutiérrez near midfield and stormed down the touch line. Klein's cross from the right wing made contact with Fire midfielder Jesse Marsch who failed to clear the ball, allowing Miklos Molnar to make light contact and roll the ball past keeper Zach Thornton for the only goal of the match. The Fire responded by using its attacking forces to find an equalizer, but failed to break the Wizards defense and goalkeeper Tony Meola, who made ten saves in the final. Meola earned his 5th shutout of the playoffs in addition to 16 clean sheets to his name from the regular season.

Details

Kansas City Wizards1–0Chicago Fire
Molnar  11' Report
Attendance: 39,159
GK1 Tony Meola 76'
RB3 Nick Garcia 58'
CB6 Peter Vermes
LB4 Brandon Prideaux
RM17 Chris Klein (c) 88'
CM15 Kerry Zavagnin
CM2 Matt McKeon
CM11 Preki 74'
LM19 Chris Henderson
FW10 Mo Johnston 48'
FW7 Miklos Molnar
Substitutes:
DF20 Uche Okafor 74'
DF21 Francisco Gomez 88'
Manager:
Bob Gansler
GK18 Zach Thornton
RB15 Jesse Marsch 59'
CB2 C.J. Brown
CB12 Carlos Bocanegra
LB30 Tenywa Bonseu 76'
RM21 Dema Kovalenko 47'
CM11 Diego Gutiérrez 70'
CM10 Piotr Nowak (c) 83'
LM14 Chris Armas
CF8 Hristo Stoitchkov
CF9 Ante Razov
Substitutes:
FW16 Josh Wolff 59'
MF7 DaMarcus Beasley 70'
MF5 Luboš Kubík 83'
Manager:
Bob Bradley

Man of the Match:
Tony Meola (Kansas City Wizards)

Assistant referees:
Craig Lowry (United States)
George Vergara (United States)
Fourth official:
Kevin Stott (United States)

Match rules

  • 90 minutes.
  • 30 minutes of extra time if necessary.
  • Penalty shoot-out if scores still level.
  • Seven named substitutes.
  • Maximum of three substitutions.

References

  1. Goff, Steven (October 20, 2017). "American soccer made its home at aging, funky RFK Stadium". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 7, 2019.
  2. "The Road to M.L.S. Cup ´00". The New York Times. September 14, 2000. Retrieved December 4, 2019.
  3. Page, Rodney (October 7, 1999). "Tampa Bay closes in on hosting MLS Cup". Tampa Bay Times. p. C10. Retrieved August 7, 2019 via Newspapers.com.
  4. Goff, Steven (February 24, 2000). "RFK to Host Its Second MLS Title Game". The Washington Post. p. D7. Retrieved August 7, 2019.
  5. Ward, Bill (February 16, 2000). "MLS Cup won't be in Tampa". The Tampa Tribune. p. C1. Retrieved August 7, 2019 via Newspapers.com.
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