For the eighth time in the first 10 games of the season, the Chicago Fire fell behind against the Portland Timbers on Sunday.
But after coming back from deficits twice in the last three games, the Fire simply weren’t able to pull this one out.
“I feel like the issue is that we haven’t really haven’t put together a consistent 90 minutes,” defender Dan Gargan told MLSsoccer.com after the team’s 2-1 loss in Portland. “We’ve put very good halves together, we’ve played very well in 60-minute stretches. I think we’re looking for a really good 90-minute performance from start to finish. That’s certainly something we need to get better at.”
The Timbers scored two goals off of corner kicks: the first when Eric Brunner scored after a scramble in the box, and the second when Kris Boyd’s open header deflected off of Fire midfielder Logan Pause and into the Chicago goal.
Gargan thought the small confines of the JELD-WEN Field and the size of the Timbers’ players made it difficult to defend corner kicks.
“They’re a big team. On this field, you’re obviously taking corners a lot closer than normal,” Gargan said. “They were two separate issues that allowed them to score. We need to be tougher on set pieces because, especially in a place like this against a team like this, that doesn’t really have much from the run of play, that’s where they get their chances from.”
The Fire still haven’t put together consecutive results in a remarkably inconsistent season, and there’s much chance to dwell on this one. They return to action on Wednesday at home against FC Dallas.
“We had put in a couple of strong performances,” Gargan said. “We’re certainly disappointed to not come out of here with any points. This one stings a little bit.”
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