The Chicago Fire and Sporting Kansas City played to a 1-1 draw Tuesday afternoon in both sides’ third matches of the 2011 MLS Reserve League. The two teams traded first half goals before playing to a scoreless second half.
Making his Reserves debut, newly minted Fire striker Cristian Nazarit gave the Fire an early lead when strike partner Orr Barouch won the ball at the top of the 18. The Colombian forward ran on to the ball, carrying it into the box before slotting his low effort past Jimmy Nielsen and into the left corner to give the Fire a 1-0 lead in the 11th minute.
Following the goal, the Fire carried much of the possession through the next 20 minutes, but gave up the equalizer against the run of play as Sporting midfielder Luke Sassano rocketed a shot from the top of the penalty arc which beat Fire ‘keeper Alec Dufty before coming off the cross bar and falling to the feet of Chance Myers. The fourth year Kansas City player took a touch before burying the rebound past Dufty from close range in the 40th minute.
Myers almost put Kansas City ahead two minutes later when a giveaway in the Fire midfield resulted in Sporting striker C.J. Sapong running towards the top of the Fire penalty area. Sapong laid the ball off for Myers whose chip got taken by the wind and went just over Dufty’s goal in the 42nd minute.
Switching sides at the half, the Fire used the wind to their advantage early when midfielder Baggio Husidic played a long ball over the top for Barouch who ran onto the ball in stride, before beating defender Shavar Thomas. Walking in alone on Nielsen’s goal, Barouch’s low effort was saved by the charging Danish ‘keeper to preserve the 1-1 score line in the 50th minute.
Just a minute later, Barouch threaded a great ball to Bratislav Ristic down the left who ran into space before crossing for Husidic at the top of the penalty area. The third-year Fire midfielder fired his effort just over Nielsen’s bar in the 51st minute.
Though good offensive spurts came at the start of the half, the rest of the match fell off following a foul on Victor Pineda in the 66th minute. The play resulted in a tussle between the two sides with the Fire’s Ristic and Barouch receiving yellow cards, while Kansas City’s Sassano was also cautioned.
With neither team able to put much together through the end of the half, referee Michael Kennedy blew the whistle and the two sides shared a point a piece.
With the result, the Fire Reserves move to 2-0-1 (7 pts.) and sit atop the MLS Reserve League’s Central division. Sporting moves to 1-1-1 (4 pts.) and stay at fourth spot in the division.
Sporting is back in Reserve League action Sunday, May 29 when they visit the Colorado Rapids while the Fire take a long break from Reserve play, with the next match coming Tuesday, July 5th when they welcome the FC Dallas Reserves to TOYOTA PARK.
For more information on the 2011 Chicago Fire Reserves visit www.chicago-fire.com.
- The Chicago Fire’s new Colombian striker Cristian Nazarit tallied his first goal in the 11th minute
- Fire Academy product Peter Beasley has appeared in all three Reserve matches this season
Chicago Fire Reserves 1 – 1 Sporting KC Reserves
Chicago Fire: Alec Dufty; Dasan Robinson, Kwame Watson-Siriboe, Josip Mikulic (Peter Beasley* 41’), Bratislav Ristic ©; Martin Rivas, Brady Wahl*, Baggio Husidic, Victor Pineda; Cristian Nazarit (Gabriel Ferrari 69’), Orr Barouch
Substitutes not used: Jon Conway, Joel Salmeron* Drew Conner*
Sporting KC: Jimmy Nielsen ©; Seth Sinovic, Matt Besler, Shavar Thomas, Kevin Ellis; Craig Rocastle, Luke Sassano (Wes White* 81’), Scott Lorenz (Korede Aiyegbusi 75’) Ryan Smith, Chance Myers; C.J. Sapong
Substitutes Not Used: Jonathan Kempin, Eric DeJulio*
CHI – Cristian Nazarit (Orr Barouch) 11’
KC – Chance Myers (unassisted) 40’
CHI – Bratislav Ristic (caution) 66’
KC – Luke Sassano (caution) 66’
CHI – Orr Barouch (caution) 67’