CHICAGO, Ill. (May 11, 2013) – The Chicago Fire (2-6-1; seven points) fell 1-0 to the Philadelphia Union (4-3-3, 15 points) Saturday afternoon at Toyota Park. The Fire created 15 shots on goal but fell victim to a 75th minute goal by Union forward Jack McInerney.
The Fire came close in the 33rd minute. Patrick Nyarko dribbled into the box and centered the ball for Chris Rolfe but the Union’s Gabriel Farfan blocked the initial shot. Daniel Paladini pounced on the rebound and unleashed a one-time shot that Zac MacMath kicked out to Wells Thompson, but Thompson’s shot was blocked out for a corner kick.
After a scoreless first half the Fire came out with renewed vigor and continued to press for the opening goal.
In the 48th Gonzalo Segares sent in a cross for the left side to Paladini, who laid the ball off for Nyarko. The fleet-footed Ghanaian was able to pivot and hit a right-footed blast on goal but it banged off the post and out for a Union goal kick.
The visitors got the only goal of the match in the 75th minute. The Union won a free kick just inside the Fire’s half. Sebastian Le Toux took a quick restart, sending the ball in behind the Fire backline to Jack McInerney. The Alpharetta, Ga. native took a touch to settle and slotted the ball past Johnson to give the Union the 1-0 lead.
In the 78th minute, Fire ‘keeper Sean Johnson snagged a Union corner kick out of the air and quickly sent the ball up field for Nyarko. Nyarko broke away from Raymon Gaddis and headed towards goal. In alone with MacMath, Nyarko was unable to round the ‘keeper and MacMath swept the ball away to freedom.
The Fire would get one last chance in the waning moments of the match. Rolfe dribbled into the box, played a give-and-go with Segares, and lofted the ball across the goal. The cross was headed out by the Union defense to Quincy Amarikwa, who unleashed a powerful volley toward goal but MacMath was able to punch it out at the last second as the match ended 1-0.
The Men in Red return to action when they head to Philadelphia to take on the Union at PPL Park in Chester, Penn. on Saturday, May 18 at 6:30 p.m. CT (My50/107.9 La Ley.) The Fire return to Toyota Park when they host D.C. United on Sunday, June 2 at 4:00 p.m. CT (My50/UniMas/107.9 La Ley). Tickets for the match are available by calling 888-MLS-Fire or by visiting www.Chicago-Fire.com.
The Fire now hold a 3-4-1 all-time record against the Philadelphia Union.
With midfielder Jeff Larentowicz serving a one-game suspension for a red card that he received April 27 against the Montreal Impact and Fire forward Sherjill MacDonald out with Strep Throat, Fire head coach Frank Klopas trotted out his ninth different starting lineup in nine games.
With MacDonald unavailable, midfielder Patrick Nyarko started up top alongside Chris Rolfe.
Fire defender Gonzalo Segares surpassed Jesse Marsch to take possession of fifth place on the Fire leader’s charts with 183 MLS Regular Season starts.
- Fire midfielder Wells Thompson returned to the starting lineup after serving a one-game suspension that was given to him by the MLS Disciplinary Committee for his challenge on Columbus Crew midfielder Agustín Viana in the 12th minute of the match on Saturday, April 20.
Chicago Fire 0 - 1 Philadelphia Union
Chicago Fire: Sean Johnson; Wells Thompson, Jalil Anibaba, Austin Berry, Gonzalo Segares; Dilly Duka (Alex 63’), Logan Pause ©, Daniel Paladini (Quincy Amarikwa 84’), Joel Lindpere (Maicon Santos 73’); Chris Rolfe, Patrick Nyarko
Substitutes not used: Paolo Tornaghi, Michael Videira, Yazid Atouba, Corben Bone
Philadelphia Union: Zac MacMath; Amobi Okugo, Bakary Soumare, Gabriel Farfan, Raymon Gaddis, Keon Daniel; Brian Carroll ©, Michael Farfan, Danny Cruz (Sebastien Le Toux 56’); Jack McInerney, Conor Casey (Antoine Hoppenot 61’)
Substitutes not used: Chris Konopka, Chris Albright, Jose Kleberson, Roger Torres, Matt Kassel
PHI – Jack McInerney (Sebastien Le Toux) 75’
CHI – Dilly Duka (caution) 62’
Referee: Armando Villarreal
Assistants: George Gansner, Matthew Kreitzer
Fourth Official: Baldomero Toledo