The Chicago Fire recorded its first win of the 2019 preseason on Wednesday, defeating Spanish Segunda División B side CF Fuenlabrada 1-0 at the Estadio Fernando Torres. Midfielder Aleksandar Katai scored for a second straight match in the victory, finishing a long-distance strike in the second half.
The win over CF Fuenlabrada marks the Fire’s final preseason match in Spain, with the team set to return to Chicago on Thursday. After spending three days in Chicago, the Fire will travel to Charleston, S.C., on Monday, Feb. 11 to compete against the Charleston Battery, FC Cincinnati and Columbus Crew SC in the Carolina Challenge Cup.
43’ With two minutes remaining in the first half, the Fire created a clear chance to score when Katai ran at the defense before slipping the ball toward the left side of the box for midfielder Przemyslaw Frankowski, who powered his final effort high of the target.
52’ Just seven minutes into the second half, Katai opened the scoring with a curling strike from distance. After combining with defender Raheem Edwards on the far left side of the box, Katai drifted inside toward the edge of the box and curled a powerful strike into the top right corner of the goal (WATCH).
67’ The Fire created another chance to score when forward Fabian Herbers connected with a corner kick, nodding a strong header just high of the target.
88’ With two minutes remaining in the game, the Fire came close to doubling its lead when forward Amando Moreno connected with defender Nicolas Hasler’s cross, producing an acrobatic bicycle kick that forced a strong save from the goalkeeper.
Chicago Fire 1:0 CF Fuenlabrada
First 45: GK Sanchez; D Campos, D Kappelhof, D Marcelo, D Edwards; M McCarty, M Schweinsteiger, M Katai, M Mihailovic (Martinez, 35), M Frankowski; F Nikolic (Moreno, 30)
Second 45: GK Sanchez (Cleveland, 61); D Kappelhof (Hasler, 61), D Schorch*, D Marcelo (Lillard, 61), D Edwards (Corrales, 61); M McCarty (Gutjahr, 61), M Bronico, M Moreno, M Martinez, M Frankowski (Adams, 61), F Katai (Herbers, 61)