Tim Howard: All-Time USA Legend Just Can’t Solve the Chicago Fire

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Tim Howard is arguably the greatest goalkeeper in American soccer history. He’s won three CONCACAF Men’s Goalkeeper of the Year awards and one Fútbol de Primera Player of the Year honor. During the 2014 World Cup, he was a bonafide national hero.

However, he just can’t solve the Chicago Fire. In his final visit to the windy city today, he conceded four times and registered a loss as the Fire beat his Colorado Rapids 4-1. To be fair, he didn’t get much support as the team around him is not good; at all. Colorado are among the worst sides in all of Major League Soccer.

tim howard

However, the last time Tim Howard recorded a victory over Chicago, he was with the New York/New Jersey Metro Stars (a team that has since re-branded as an energy drink mascot), and he hasn’t been with that club in over a decade and a half.

Today, the Fire got goals from Nemanja Nikolic, C.J. Sapong, Djordje Mihailovic and Aleksandar Katai. They fired up 12 shots, getting five of them on target.

“Definitely a big player and a great career,” Chicago Fire Coach Veljko Paunovic said in post game. “A huge honor to have him here, but it’s also a huge motivation for our players.”

“You always want to be the champions, you always want to go against the best players, the best goalkeepers, and that’s an additional motivation that I think the guys had. We have respect for our opponents, in this case for Howard.”

Pauno also acknowledged how this game had much better weather than all of the Fire’s other previous home games this season, and thus the fans came out. Pauno gave props to the fans, who witnessed what was definitely the Fire’s most complete outing of the season by far.

veljko paunovic

While the Rapids are a side dwelling near the bottom, the Fire will take three points at every opportunity, especially with a trio of road games coming up.

Scoring on Howard was just another day at the office for Sapong.

“At the end of the day, we’re playing a game, and we know there’s figures on the opposition that may have played here, there wherever,” he responded to a query about scoring on Howard, in this his final match in Chicago, “but when you step on the field as a team, it’s us versus them and that’s not really anything that’s going through your mind.”

Tim Howard is a very thoughtful, interesting guy (listen to our exclusive with him over at this link, in which the New Brunswick, New Jersey native discussed what we learned while playing for Manchester United and Everton), and he has a very bright future beyond his playing career.

He’s known for his famous “paleo diet,” a lifestyle concept based on the simple premise of “if a caveman didn’t eat it, you shouldn’t either,” and his charity work with PETA.

He’s also done a lot of broadcasting work, during his playing career, so it’s likely that will be the next field he transitions into full time at the end of this MLS season.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, regularly appears as a guest pundit on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

He also contributes sociopolitical essays to Chicago NowFollow him on Twitter and Instagram. The content of his cat’s Instagram account is unquestionably superior to his.

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