TORONTO (Aug. 23, 2014) – The Chicago Fire (4-6-14, 26 points) earned a 2-2 road draw against Toronto FC (9-8-6, 33 points) Saturday evening at BMO Field in Toronto, Ontario. Welsh striker Robert Earnshaw scored in his Fire debut and Quincy Amarikwa tallied his team-leading seventh goal of the season as the Men in Red picked up a valuable road point.
After three matches on the road, the Fire return home to host FC Dallas at Toyota Park on Saturday, Aug. 30 at 7:30 p.m. CT (My50/TWCSC Wisconsin/La Ley 107.9 FM). Tickets for the match, presented by Crush, are available via Ticketmaster, www.Chicago-Fire.com or by calling 888-MLS-FIRE.
Match Recap: http://bit.ly/1prUfsR
Chicago Fire Head Coach and Director of Soccer Frank Yallop
Thoughts on the game
“Hard fought, coming back in any game always feels like you got something out of it as opposed to letting it slip. I’m really happy with the fight back and the spirit of the guys. Obviously, quality wise we weren’t quite there yet but the fighting spirit was great.”
On Robert Earnshaw’s debut performance
“As TFC fans know, he knows where the net is. He hasn’t played for a couple months now and he said he probably has 15 minutes in him and I said, “How does 30 sound?” He’s dangerous and he creates the second goal with his forcefulness in the box and he is going to help us. I felt we were very dynamic once Ernie came on and it was nice to see.”
On the playoff chase
“Every team I manage I want them to fight hard. We’ve been in almost every game but we just don’t have quite enough quality in all our positions to really dominate and take games over. We do have the fighting spirit and once we add some pieces I think we’ll be okay, so it’s a building process but I’m happy with the overall commitment from everybody.”
Chicago Fire forward Quincy Amarikwa
Thoughts on the game
“We didn’t make it easy on ourselves but as a team we fought together and we got the draw.”
On the goal
“We were trying to bring them into the middle and then get it out wide for some crosses.”
On the addition of Robert Earnshaw
“That’s what we expected out of him, just to come off the bench and bring some energy. He came on and scored right away and hopefully this leads to more goals in the future. Hopefully we can build a little partnership.”
Chicago Fire forward Robert Earnshaw
On returning to Toronto
“It’s like I haven’t been away. Maybe just because it is a familiar ground and a place I am very fond of. I have been back and forth here, it’s a great place that I like to come to. I’d like to thank everyone at Toronto as I never got a chance to really thank everyone here. From Ryan Nelsen to the whole organization, I just want to say thank you very much. The goal I scored was a welcome to Chicago, but also a thank you very much to Toronto.”
On returning to Major League Soccer
“Yeah, I love to play. I enjoyed just coming in and getting the shirt on, getting a feel for the ball, felt great. I want to get better on a personal level. I’ve come here to give something extra, contribute and help each teammate to do better with my experience and quality.”
- Tonight’s match marked the first start in a Fire shirt for midfielder Sanna Nyassi.
- Welsh striker Robert Earnshaw made his Fire debut when he entered the match in the 65th minute.
- With his goal in the 70th minute, Earnshaw becomes the second player to score in their Fire debut this season, joining midfielder Benji Joya, who scored with his first touch in the season opener on March 9.
- Earnshaw is the second player in consecutive weeks to make their Fire debut against their former MLS side.
- Quincy Amarikwa’s 90th minute equalizer was his team-leading seventh goal of the season. This is a career-high for Amarikwa, previously with Toronto FC, who prior to scoring three goals for the Men in Red during the 2013 season, had not scored more than one goal per season in his first four years as a professional.
Chicago Fire 2 – 2 Toronto FC
Chicago Fire: Sean Johnson; Lovel Palmer, Jeff Larentowicz ©, Bakary Soumare, Gonzalo Segares; Alex, Razvan Cocis, Matt Watson, Sanna Nyassi (Robert Earnshaw 65’); Harry Shipp (Grant Ward 58’), Quincy Amarikwa
Substitutes not used: Kyle Reynish, Chris Ritter, Logan Pause, Matthew Fondy, Patrick Ianni
Toronto FC: Joe Bendik; Mark Bloom, Steven Caldwell (Doneil Henry 22’), Justin Morrow (Jackson 58’), Nick Hagglund; Jonathan Osorio, Dominic Oduro, Michael Bradley, Collen Warner; Gilbeto, Jermain Defoe (Luke Moore 77’)
Substitutes not used: Bradley Orr, Bright Dike, Kyle Bekker, Chris Konopka
TOR – Own Goal (Bakary Soumare) 3’
CHI – Robert Earnshaw (Grant Ward) 70’
TOR – Gilberto (Luke Moore) 79’
CHI – Quincy Amarikwa (Lovel Palmer) 90’
CHI – Lovel Palmer (caution) 20’
CHI – Alex (caution) 39’
CHI – Bakary Soumare (caution) 46’
TOR – Collen Warner (caution) 57’
CHI – Gonzalo Segares (caution) 90+’
Referee: Daniel Fitzgerald
Assistants: Joe Fletcher, Bill Dittmar
Fourth Official: Silviu Petrescu