Pappa honors team for Goal of the Year nod

The Chicago Fire's Marco Pappa

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BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. – Chicago Fire winger Marco Pappa was awarded AT&T Goal of the Year on Wednesday, securing the honor for his fantastic strike in the Fire’s April 10 match against the San Jose Earthquakes.

“This is good news,” Pappa said. “To win the best goal in 2010 is a big moment in my career and for me individually. It is a nice honor for the club as I have worked hard this year to do my best for the Fire.”

The goal, which came in the 52nd minute of the Fire’s 2-1 loss, was a 25-yard left-footed rocket that curled just inside the top right corner.

“It was a good play — a solid buildup by the team,” Pappa said. “[Brian] McBride recovered the ball and fed it to me. I saw [Patrick] Nyarko running into space on the wing and passed him the ball in the air. He dribbled down the flank and found Collins [John], who made a good reception of the ball. I made my run and Collins gave me a good ball that I hit into the corner of the net.”

Pappa’s equalizer sent the sell-out Toyota Park crowd into hysterics and inspired the Guatemalan goal-scorer to launch into an acrobatic back flip – a celebration almost as stunning as the goal itself.

“When I saw that the goal was a beautiful goal, I got really excited and wanted to do something crazy, like a back flip,” Pappa said. “When I was really young my parents and older brother taught me how to do back flips. Sometimes they say to me now, ‘You can’t do a back flip’ – so I wanted to show them that I could still do it.”

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