MADRID, Spain (January 30, 2019) - Playing its first preseason match of the 2019 campaign, the Chicago Fire battled Atletico Madrid B to a 1-1 draw at the Spanish National Team’s training facility, La Cuidad del Futbol de Las Rozas. Midfielder Aleksandar Katai scored for the Fire late in the first half to record his first goal of the 2019 preseason.
Despite having only six days of training sessions as a unit, Head Coach Veljko Paunovic’s team created several close chances to take the lead early in the match.
In the 20th minute of play, defender Raheem Edwards played a precise cross to the far post for midfielder Brandt Bronico, whose close-range header forced a difficult save from the goalkeeper.
Minutes later, a quick combination play between Katai and recently acquired winger Przemyslaw Frankowski created space for forward Nemanja Nikolic inside the 18-yard box. Nikolic’s quick strike from just outside the six-yard box forced another strong diving save from the goalkeeper.
Atletico Madrid B managed to take the lead late in the first half after earning a penalty kick in the 28th minute of play. Just four minutes later, the Fire responded with an equalizer after Katai intercepted a pass in the final third and drove toward the goal before calmly slotting his effort into the far corner.
Wednesday’s match between the Fire and Atletico Madrid B featured two 35-minute halves. Six recently signed players featured in their first match for Fire, including goalkeeper David Ousted, defender Marcelo, midfielders Przemysław Frankowski and Jeremiah Gutjahr and wingers Cristian Martinez and Amando Moreno.
Chicago Fire 1:1 Atletico Madrid B
January 30, 2019 – Ciudad Del Futbol
Chicago Fire: GK Ousted (Cleveland, 35); D Campos (Hasler, 35), D Kappelhof (Antonio Rodriguez*, 35), D Marcelo (Lillard, 35), D Edwards (Corrales, 35); M McCarty (Adams, 50), M Schweinsteiger (Gutjahr, 50), M Katai, M Bronico (Martinez, 35), M Frankowski (Moreno, 35), F Nikolic *Denotes trialist