FINAL: KC 2 - 0 Fire

Wizards work magic, beat Fire to stay alive


Davy Arnaud scored for the second time in two games andTeal Bunbury added a late insurance goal as the Kansas City Wizards kept their slim playoff hopes alive with a 2-0 win over the Chicago Fire in front of 12,230 at Toyota Park on Tuesday night.

The Kansas City now need to win their final two games and hope Colorado fail to earn a point in their final two matches if the Wizards are to have a chance at making the postseason.

The game got off to a quick – if sloppy – start. The Wizards had the first real chance, nearly going ahead in the eighth minute, when midfielder Craig Rocastleput a 25-yard volley off the crossbar. Rocastle collected Chicago defenderKrzysztof Krol’s poor clearance and slammed a shot with his first touch. The ball looped past Fire goalie Andrew Dykstra, but couldn’t quite sneak under the bar, rebounding out of danger.

Chicago had a near miss of their own in the 15th minute. Designated PlayerFreddie Ljungbergsnaked his way into the box, had an initial pass blocked, then recovered and found rookie midfielderCorben Bone wide open at the top of the 18. The first round pick, making his first ever MLS start, hit a dangerous one-time shot with his left, but it rolled just wide of the near post.

Kansas City applied heavy pressure after Bone’s chance, bombarding Dykstra with long-distance shot after long-distance shot.

Despite the constant pressure, the Wizards next real chance wouldn’t come until the 36th. Bunbury collected Arnaud’s through ball in the right side of the area, but couldn’t quite slip his shot past onrushing keeper Andrew Dykstra, who deflected the rookie’s first time shot out of bounds.

Arnaud put the Wizards ahead one minute into first half injury time. Bunbury played the veteran midfielder into wide open space in the left side of the box and Arnaud did the rest, appearing alone on the left side of the box to curl a right-footed shot past Dykstra from 15 yards out.

Bunbury hit the post in the 58th. The first-round pick hit a 25-yard shot off the leg of Chicago midfielder Logan Pause. The deflection wrong-footed Dykstra, who could only look on helplessly as the ball rebounded off the left upright.

The Fire tried fighting back after falling behind, but Kansas City put the game away in the 80th minute when Bunbury collected Josh Wolff’s through ball on the right side and hammered home a right-footed strike from 11 yards.

Kansas City will now head to New England on Saturday, where they can't afford anything but a win. Chicago close out their home schedule that same day, hosting MLS cellar-dwellers D.C. United at Toyota Park.

Scoring Summary:

KC -- Davy Arnaud 6 (Teal Bunbury 2, Kei Kamara 6) 46+

KC -- Teal Bunbury 5 (Josh Wolff 3, Michael Harrington 4) 80

Misconduct Summary:

KC -- Davy Arnaud (caution; Tactical Foul) 65

KC -- Graham Zusi (caution; Reckless Foul) 91+

Lineups:

Kansas City Wizards -- Jimmy Nielsen, Michael Harrington, Matt BeslerJimmy ConradRoger Espinoza, Kei Kamara (Chance Myers 85), Stephane Auvray(Jack Jewsbury 75), Davy Arnaud, Craig Rocastle, Josh Wolff (Graham Zusi 87), Teal Bunbury.
Substitutes Not Used: Birahim DiopJonathan LeathersShavar ThomasEric Kronberg.

Chicago Fire -- Andrew Dykstra, Bratislav Ristic, C.J. BrownKwame Watson-Siriboe, Krzysztof Krol, Corben Bone (Patrick Nyarko 38), Peter Lowry, Logan Pause, Calen Carr (Nery Castillo 62), Freddie Ljungberg, Collins John (Brian McBride 46).
Substitutes Not Used: Wilman CondeBaggio HusidicDeris Umanzor, Alec Dufty.

Referee: Ricardo Salazar
Referee's Assistants: Thomas Supple; Peter Manikowski
4th Official: Jeff Gontarek
Weather: Clear and 60 degrees
Attendance: 12,230