Matt Polster

Chicago Fire Rally to Tie Defending MLS Cup Champion Portland Timbers 1-1 at Toyota Park

BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. (May 28, 2016) – The Chicago Fire rallied from a 1-0 deficit to draw the defending MLS Cup Champion Portland Timbers thanks to a goal from David Accam.

The Fire outshot their guests 17-8 and held a 6-2 advantage in shots on goal. After falling behind 1-0 in the 18th minute, Accam equalized two minutes later and Chicago pressed for a second goal.

Match Highlights | Match Stats and Box Score | Photos

Chicago had the first golden chance of the game in the 17th minute. Kennedy Igboananike and David Accam exchanged passes, working their way into the box. The final pass gave Igboananike a look at the frame with space to unleash a powerful shot. If not for a fingertip save by Portland goalkeeper Jake Gleeson, the Fire would have seen the lead.

Instead, the Timbers were first to the scoreboard moments later. Diego Valeri did the damage, winning a 50-50 ball in the air near just inside the box. Valeri turned and slotted his shot into the far side netting to take a temporary 1-0 lead.

Postmatch Reaction: Polster | Accam | Paunovic

Two minutes later, Accam and Igboananike linked up for an equalizer. This time it was Accam receiving a pass from his teammate on the ground in the area. The Ghanaian striker one-timed his shot past Gleeson from 6 yards out for his third goal of the season.

The Fire came out of the break pressing for the go-ahead goal. They held 58 percent of the possession over the first 10 minutes of the second

Igboananike had another chance blocked by the outstretched hands of Gleeson in the 65th minute. Accam beat Portland defender Nat Borchers one-on-one on the left side of the box and picked out Igboananike with a centering pass. Igboananike took a touch and then cracked a shot low toward the left post and Gleeson sprawled to punch it away on the line.

The Men in Red and Major League Soccer will take a break over the next two weeks for Copa America Centenario. Chicago will play its next regular season game on Saturday, June 18 against the Colorado Rapids at Dick’s Sporting Goods Stadium. Kickoff is 8 p.m. CT on CSN Chicago Plus and 97.5 FM Poder.

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MLS Regular Season
Chicago Fire (2-5-5, 11 points) 1:1 Portland Timbers (4-6-4, 16 points)
May 28, 2016 – Toyota Park
Attendance: 14,729

Scoring Summary:
POR – Diego Valeri (unassisted) 18
CHI – David Accam (Kennedy Igboananike, Joao Meira) 20

Misconduct Summary:
CHI – Johan Kappelhof (caution) 38
POR – Liam Ridgewell (caution) 69
CHI – Rodrigo Ramos (caution) 77
POR – Chris Klute (caution) 90+2

Chicago Fire: Sean Johnson, Rodrigo Ramos (Eric Gehrig 83), Johan Kappelhof ©, Jonathan Campbell, Brandon Vincent, Matt Polster, Razvan Cocis, Joao Meira (Joey Calistri 76), Arturo Alvarez (Khaly Thiam 65), Kennedy Igboananike, David Accam.

Shots: 17; Shots On-Goal: 6; Saves: 1; Fouls: 12; Corners: 10; Offsides: 4

Portland Timbers: Jake Gleeson, Zarek Valentin, Nat Borchers, Liam Ridgewell ©, Chris Klute, Ben Zemanski, Diego Chara, Lucas Melano, Diego Valeri, Dairon Asprilla, Jack McInerney (Fanendo Adi 62).

Shots: 8; Shots On-Goal: 2; Saves: 5; Fouls: 11; Corners: 5; Offsides: 0

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