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Sept. 15, 2000 – Chicago Fire 2:1 Revolution, MLS playoffs at Soldier Field (Att.: 10,476)

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Wolde Harris’ 50th-minute goal deflected off current New England Revolution assistant coach Tom Soehn to give the Revolution their first MLS playoff advantage. The Revolution had advanced to the playoffs only once in the first four seasons of MLS, and it took until this series for them to win their first playoff match.

Chicago equalized on a Mauricio Wright 54th-minute own goal, headed off the underside of the bar on a Peter Nowak free kick, then Dema Kovalenko’s 74th-minute score off a 50-yard laser from Hristo Stoitchkov broke the deadlock.

In the first half, Chicago’s Ante Razov had been cautioned by referee Tim Weyland after knocking down Wright with a hair-pull from behind and punch to the face.

Sept. 19, 2000 – Revolution 2:1 Chicago, Revolution’s first MLS playoff win at Foxboro Stadium (Att.: 10,723)

U.S. national team all-time leading scorer Eric Wynalda’s 18th-minute score was his only Revolution goal in 11 matches over two seasons. Jeff Causey saved a 45th-minute Stoitchkov penalty kick before Kovalenko’s 83rd-minute goal equalized. (Causey’s fifth save on six PK attempts in 2000). Wright scored the first Revolution playoff game-winner in the 85th minute, heading in off the post off a free kick from Jose Luis “Moralitos” Morales, formerly of Real Madrid. Morales, who then sent a shot over Zach Thornton off the bar, scored once in 10 Revolution appearances – his goal in a 1-0 victory over D.C. United on Aug. 30 providing the clinching victory for a playoff spot.

Sept. 22, 2000 – Chicago 6:0 Revolution at Soldier Field (Att.: 5,972)

This was the worst Revolution defeat ever and the team would not lose by six goals again until a regular-season match at Real Salt Lake in 2009. (The team record was snapped in a 7-0 loss to Atlanta United on Saturday, Sept. 16).

This series sparked the rivalry between the Revolution and Fire, which went on to lose, 1-0, to Kansas City in the MLS Cup final.

TODAY IN NEW ENGLAND SOCCER HISTORY

 

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