CHICAGO, Ill. – The Chicago Fire defeated the Houston Dynamo 1-0 Monday morning in MLS Reserve League action at Toyota Park. A seventh minute goal from Uruguayan forward Federico Puppo sealed the victory for the Fire, improving the team’s reserve league record to 2-2-0, while the Dynamo fell to 3-1-0.
Windy weather followed Sunday night’s threatening thunder and lightning storms that forced the two sides’ first team match to be called in the 66th minute. With the strong gusts, the game was moved from the Toyota Park practice field to inside the stadium.
The Fire played with the wind at their back in the first half and used it to their advantage in the seventh minute. Dynamo goalkeeper Tyler Deric played a short goal kick to Adam Moffat, whose clearance out of the back appeared to strike the arm of Puppo. With no whistle, Puppo played on and finished past Deric to put the Fire up 1-0.
The Fire nearly doubled their lead in the 28th minute when Colombian midfielder Rafael Robayo played striker Orr Barouch into the box on the right before a last-second sliding tackle from Brian Ownby saved the Israeli international’s effort. Ownby remained down after the player and was eventually substituted in the 33rd minute.
The Dynamo found their best chance of the first half just before the break when Kofi Sarkodie whipped in a swerving ball for Mac Kandji. The Houston striker headed the ball towards the back post but was denied by a diving stop from Fire ‘keeper Paolo Tornaghi.
Using the wind to their advantage in the second half, the Dynamo had the lion’s share of possession. Their first clear cut chance came in the 64th minute when Alex Dixon’s low corner kick was caught by the wind, swerved and forced another diving stop from Tornaghi.
Houston nearly equalized 20 minutes later when Dixon curled a knuckling effort that Tornaghi stumbled to save before recovering to clean up the mess, giving the Fire a 1-0 victory.
The Chicago Fire return to MLS Reserve League play on Sunday, May 13 when they host Sporting Kansas City at 10:00 a.m. CT on the Toyota Park Practice Field. The Dynamo next visit the Colorado Rapids in Reserve League play on Wednesday, May 23 at 11:00 a.m. MT on Dick’s Sporting Goods Field 20.
MLS Reserve League: Chicago Fire 1 – 0 Houston Dynamo
CHI – Federico Puppo (unassisted) 7’
HOU – Adam Moffat (caution) 20’
CHI – Michael Videira (caution) 34’
CHI – Stefan Antonijevic (caution) 45+’
HOU – Macoumba Kandji (caution) 81’
Chicago Fire Reserves – Paolo Tornaghi; Hunter Jumper, Austin Berry, Stefan Antonijevic*, Tony Walls; Rafael Robayo, Sola Abulaji* (Drew Conner** 66’), Michael Videira; Corben Bone; Federico Puppo (Kellen Gulley 81’), Orr Barouch (Lucky Mkosana* 56’)
Subs not used: Jay Nolly, Joel Salmeron**
Houston Dynamo Reserves – Tyler Deric; Kofi Sarkodie, Adam Moffat, Warren Creavalle, Oscar Recio; Macoumba Kandji, Alex Dixon, Calen Carr, Brian Ownby (Bradley Bourgeois** 33’); Cam Weaver, Colin Rolfe
Subs not used: Erich Marscheider, Christian Gonzalez**
*Denotes Guest Player **Denotes Academy player
Referee: Victor Herrera
Assistants Referees: Ethan Buege, Cesar Ibarra
Fourth Official: Jordan A. Pranuk