Dom Dwyer has already celebrated one league title this season. That just makes him want to do it again – not next year, but after Saturday's MLS Cup final (4 pm ET, ESPN, UniMas, TSN2/RDS in Canada).
“Whenever you get a taste of something good, you want more of it,” Sporting Kansas City's young center forward said during a conference call on Monday. “I want more.”
After scoring four goals in Orlando City SC's 7-4 victory over Charlotte in the USL PRO title game on Sept. 7, in a one-night return to the club where he began the season on loan, Dwyer will look to help Sporting win their first MLS Cup since 2000 when they host Real Salt Lake at Sporting Park.
“I think I'm just more excited about experiencing it with everyone else,” he said. “I think that's the nicest thing about being on a team. You get to celebrate with everyone else. When you do something good and it makes everyone happy, I think that's the most rewarding feeling.
“It was nice after the Orlando game,” he added. “I kind of just sat back and watched those guys celebrate. I knew I had a bigger job to do. I had to come back to KC and finish this season off right. So it was nice to see all of them happy, and there was a big buzz around here two weekends ago when we beat Houston. It was really nice, and I'm looking forward to more of that feeling."
Regardless of the outcome Saturday, Dwyer has already pulled off the feat of scoring 26 goals across six different competitions: the USL PRO regular season, that division's title game, the US Open Cup, the CONCACAF Champions League, MLS and the MLS postseason.
He wrecked the USL PRO single-season scoring record with 15 goals in 13 matches before returning from his loan, and was the MVP of the title game.
“It's exciting,” he said. “I've been lucky enough to have two opportunities now. I didn't do too well in the first one, in Orlando – nah, I'm just kidding – but it was good to have that opportunity in that first game, in the final in Orlando. It's nice to get another one. Obviously, this is a bigger stage now. I'm really looking forward to it.
"It's two quality teams. It's a big matchup. This is what we've been working for since January – or before January, since we started offseason training in December. I've been working hard up to this moment, and I'm just ready to finish off the right way.”
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Dwyer has already done plenty to get Sporting to where they are now. His 63rd-minute goal two weekends ago, in the second leg of the Eastern Conference Championship, lifted Sporting into Saturday's title game, their first appearance in the MLS Cup final since 2004.
“It's been a crazy season – up and down, but definitely on the up right now,” he said. “It's going good.”
But even with all of his individual accomplishments, Dwyer said he's most focused on Sporting's team success – this season and beyond.
“It's not so much me pushing myself and saying 'I've got to score,'” he said. “It's more 'If the team wins, then the goals will come.'”
Steve Brisendine covers Sporting Kansas City for MLSsoccer.com.