Bradley Wright-Phillips scores his 100th career MLS goal. (Geoff Burke — USA TODAY Sports)
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A typical reaction from Bradley Wright-Phillips after he joined an exclusive club Wednesday night by becoming the 11th play in MLS history to score 100 career goals.
“It was kind of lucky,” he said. “I’m obviously happy. To do it for this club too, they gave me a chance.”
The Red Bulls striker has played with a big ego on the field, but is among the most humble of players off of it, even after becoming the fastest player in league history to reach 100 goals. He accomplished the feat in 159 matches. He broke the standard set by former New England Revolution forward Taylor Twellman, who scored his century in 174 games.
Wright-Phillips beat D.C. United goalkeeper David Ousted for the fourth time in his career in the 1-0 win at Audi Field. Kaku sent the Englishman a through ball on the left side before powering a shot off the hands of Ousted inside the penalty area.
“Ousted is good, he’s given me problems, he’s annoyed me a few times,” Wright-Phillips said. “I was lucky to get one to slip through him.”
Of course, he does have his moments on the field, such as how to celebrate the goal. The man who wears No. 99 — the team wore its red shirts Wedensday — had an official Red Bulls white jersey with No. 100 on its back underneath his.
“It was an idea that was brought to me and I liked it,” he said. “I wanted to show the traveling fans the jersey underneath. It was kind of warm under there honestly. I got my chance and it was great. As soon as I got it I was relieved.”
And Wright-Phillips was slapped with a yellow card by referee Armando Villarreal for taking off his shirt during a goal celebration, a FIFA no-no.
Red Bulls head coach Chris Armas and teammates hailed the latest man to join the Century Club.
“What a day to celebrate Bradley Wright-Phillips,” Armas said. “He’s obviously a club legend but we’ve all been privileged, whoever’s spent some time around him. This is my fourth year with him. To just be part of his 100th goal, that it comes in a derby match and a meaningful one on the road, it’s a big win for him. So I’m really happy for Brad.”
The same thing went for center back Aaron Long.
“Brad is the best,” he said. “We expect him to score goals like that. We know he’s going to score goals. He’s going to keep scoring goals. He is the fastest to 100 ever, that says something great about him.”