The chase for 1000 goals
March 15, 2015
On April 13, 1996, in the inaugural season opener, Giovanni Savarese scored the first goal in Metro history. The MetroStars lost to Los Angeles, 2:1.
On March 8, 2015, in the 20th season opener, Lloyd Sam scored the 996th goal in Metro history. Red Bull New York tied Kansas City, 1:1.
That's right, we're just four goals away from 1000 Metro goals in all competitions. This includes league, playoffs, open cup, and official international tournaments -- Copa Merconorte and the CONCACAF Champions League. So let's look back at the previous milestone goals; could #1000 be as special as some of the others?
#100: April 11, 1998; Eduardo Hurtado; MetroStars 2, Los Angeles 3
Metro lost its third game to start the season in a dramatic fashion. Hurtado just arrived from LA a week earlier, and his goal in the second half briefly put Metro on top. LA, down a man for a Robin Fraser(!) red card right after the break, rallied, with the winner coming off a foot of a rookie named Clint Mathis(!!!).
#200: April 22, 2000; Petter Villegas; DC United 2, MetroStars 3
The first overtime goal in Metro history will forever be remembered: it was dramatic Mike Petke golden goal. But we wouldn't have gotten there if Villegas didn't tie it late in the first half. Metro played most of the second half and overtime down a man after Adolfo Valencia's ejection.
#300: July 18, 2001; Mike Lapper (own goal); Columbus 2, MetroStars 1
They can't all be special, can they? A drab midseason game in Columbus, where teams exchanged own goals (also on the board for the wrong team was Mark Chung). Lapper's mistake tied the game, before the Crew won it late.
#400: August 6, 2003; Eddie Pope; Columbus 3, MetroStars 4
A special game that nobody saw. On their way to the Open Cup final run, Metro went into Columbus, and down 3:1, managed to rally and win 4:3. Pope's both Metro goals came in this game; #300 was the game-tying one, before #301 gave Metro the win.
#500: August 6, 2005; Youri Djorkaeff; Dallas 2, MetroStars 2
Exactly two years after #400, we got #500. This time, it was Djorkaeff's turn to score twice as Metro mounted a two-goal comeback to tie Dallas. #500 was the Frenchman's first of the game. This was the first game played at the then-named Pizza Hut Park.
#600: August 18, 2007; Clint Mathis; New York 5, Los Angeles 4
Now we're talking special! Only one of the most famous games in team history, the 5:4 triumph over LA in front fo a massive crowd (Metro won very late on a acute-angle Juan Pablo Angel goal). Only one of the most famous goals in team history, Mathis' 45th in all competitions, on a marvelous one-time blast to pass Savarese as the leading scorer in club history.
#700: March 27, 2010; Joel Lindpere; New York 1, Chicago 0
The first ever goal scored at Red Bull Arena. Do we need to say more?
#800: October 26, 2011; Joel Lindpere; Dallas 0, New York 2
Lindpere again, and this time in the playoffs. "Clever" Hans Backe played rope-a-dope in Dallas, the home team kept attacking, but it's the Estonian who broke through and gace Metro the win in the playoff play-in game.
#900: July 27, 2013; Fabian Espindola; New York 4, Salt Lake 3
Again, we have a dramatic late winner, this time by Dax McCarty. #900 came late as well; Espindola tied the game from the spot one minute from injury time. It was his second penalty of the game.