It’s been a while since the Chicago Fire have had so many players called away from the team for international duty. In a sort of ‘aligning of the stars’, Frank Klopas saw six players absent from Wednesday’s 1-0 preseason victory over Columbus in order to represent their country, see below how they did…
Orr Barouch – Fire striker Orr Barouch opened his scoring account for the Israel U-21s, tallying the game winner in the 16th minute of their 4-0 win over Ukraine in Petah Tikva.
“To play for Israel is the most unique thing in the world,” Barouch told the Israel FA website post-game. “I feel the team is very good and hope to prove myself every time I get the opportunity.
The appearance was Barouch’s fourth since earning his first call-up last September in a 4-1 loss at England. Barouch should continue to be part of the side that prepares to host the 2013 UEFA U-21 Championships.
Dominic Oduro and Patrick Nyarko – The Fire’s Ghanaian striking tandem both earned their first caps for the Black Stars in a 1-1 draw vs. Chile Wednesday at PPL Park in Chester, Penn.
Ghanaian striker Richard Mpong put the Black Stars ahead in the 42nd minute before Chile’s Matias Fernandez equalized from the spot in the 75th minute.
Oduro started the match but came off in the 17th minute with an undisclosed injury while Nyarko came on at the break and set up two chances playing as a left winger in the second frame.
Oduro will be evaluated upon his return to Fire camp later Thursday.
Sean Johnson – Fire starting goalkeeper Sean Johnson played the second half of the U.S. U23’s match vs. Mexico in Frisco, Texas Wednesday night, combining with D.C. United’s Bill Hamid for the clean sheet in the 2-0 victory.
Johnson was called into action in the 62nd minute when Javier Aquino’s corner kick found the head of Mier before the 6-4 keeper turned the attempt away.
The game was the final tune-up for Caleb Porter’s side before U.S. U23 pre-Olympic training camp which begins on March 11.
Marco Pappa - Attacking midfielder Marco Pappa earned his 26th cap for the Guatemalan national team, making way for veteran Dwight Pezzarossi in the 75th minute of the team’s 2-0 victory at Guyana.
Los Chapines went up 1-0 via Minor López Campollo’s goal in the 32nd minute before former LA Galaxy midfielder Guillermo Ramirez iced the match deep into second half stoppage time.
Victor Pineda – Victor Pineda went played 45 minutes as the U.S. U20s downed the Houston Dynamo 1-0 behind FC Dallas’ Danny Garcia’s goal.
All players are expected to rejoin the team ahead of Saturday’s Carolina Challenge Cup finale vs. the Charleston Battery.