Fire forward Mike Magee named MLS MVP
BY PATRICK Z. McGAVIN For Sun-Times Media December 5, 2013 10:01PM
Sporting Kansas City v Chicago Fire
Updated: January 7, 2014 6:47AM
Fire forward Mike Magee was named MVP of Major League Soccer on Thursday in a runaway vote.
“This feels surreal,” Magee said. “The year was great, all but the ending.”
The Fire lost out on a playoff berth in the final game of the season.
“It’s still a bad taste in my mouth about how the season ended,” Magee said at the team’s season-ending press conference. “I can’t even think about personal accolades.”
In voting done by the league’s players, club executives and media, Magee gathered 98.81 percent of the weighted balloting and easily outdistanced his former L.A. Galaxy teammate Robbie Keane (58.56 percent) and Montreal Impact forward Marco Di Vaio (35.42). He was the only American-born player in the top four.
The Chicago native who rejuvenated the Fire’s playoff fortunes with his midseason trade from the Galaxy became the first player in the franchise’s 17-year history to capture the honor. He also became the first Chicago-born athlete since Derrick Rose to win the top award of a professional sports league.
Magee grew up in Elmhurst and attended St. Viator as a freshman before he completed high school at a special soccer academy in Florida.
“Not by any means am I calling myself Michael Jordan or Walter Payton, but to be on the short list or any list of the guys I grew up loving and pretending to be is a list I will certainly keep,” Magee said.
Magee, 29, joined the Fire on May 25; the team had started 2-8-2 without him. He scored 15 of his 21 goals (second in MLS) and contributed four assists with the Fire. His offensive output was startling given his previous personal best was just seven goals.