BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. (May 8, 2019) – The Chicago Fire Soccer Club (3-4-4, 13 points) recorded a commanding 5-0 victory over the New England Revolution (2-8-2, 8 points) at SeatGeek Stadium on Wednesday night. The 5-0 win marks the Fire’s largest victory of the season.
Four different Fire players scored in Wednesday’s match, as the Men in Red notched its second straight clean sheet. Forward Nemanja Nikolić posted his first brace of the season, extending his goal-scoring tally to a team-high five goals, while midfielders Nicolás Gaitán, Przemysław Frankowski and Brandt Bronico each tallied their first goal of the season. The Fire announced earlier today that it has signed Bronico to a new contract.
Outshooting the Revolution 16-4, including a 7-2 edge in shots on target, the Fire created chances early and often in the midweek contest. Chicago produced its first dangerous chance in the 12th minute of play through Gaitán, who combined with Nikolić before blasting an effort that just missed the target from inside the 18-yard box.
Moments later, the Fire created two strong opportunities to score and take the lead in transition. In the 14thminute, defender Bastian Schweinsteiger clipped a perfectly placed pass over the backline for Nikolić, creating a one-on-one scenario for the striker. Carrying the ball into the box, Nikolić attempted to slot the ball into the far corner, missing just wide of the target (WATCH). One minute later, Frankowski slipped the ball through the defense for Nikolić, who attempted to round goalkeeper Matt Turner and tuck the ball away but Turner recovered quickly and managed to make the save.
In the 27th minute of play, the Fire eventually took the lead after Nikolić headed home a curling free kick from Gaitán to record his fourth goal of the season (WATCH). The Men in Red earned the free kick after a foul committed against midfielder Aleksandar Katai.
Three minutes later, the Fire came close to extending its lead when Gaitán made two impressive twist-and-turn cuts with the ball to spin his marker in circles, before clipping a lofted cross to the back post for Frankowski. Attacking Gaitán’s cross, Frankowski’s header rattled off the post (WATCH).
Approaching halftime, the Fire took a 2-0 lead when Nikolić scored his second goal of the game, notching his first brace and fifth goal of the season. The goal stemmed from a threatening corner kick from Gaitán, which was redirected toward the goal by Schweinsteiger, setting up a comfortable finish for Nikolić in the 40thminute (WATCH).
Continuing to attack in the second half, the Fire produced another dangerous chance when Frankowski drifted inside and played the ball to Gaitán at the top of the box. Pulling the ball onto his left foot, Gaitán turned and struck an attempt that skipped just wide of the target in the 65th minute (WATCH).
The Fire added another goal when Bronico received the ball on the left side of the box and cut inside. With two defenders in front of him, he curled his shot into the far top corner in the 78th minute (WATCH).
In the final five minutes of the match, the Fire added two goals to close out the contest. In the 85th minute,Gaitán scored his first goal in MLS when Katai played the ball across the 18-yard box to the midfielder, creating a one-time finish for the Argentine (WATCH). Four minutes later, the Fire notched the final goal of the game when Frankowski combined with Gaitán and ventured into the 18-yard box, before calmly placing the ball between Turner’s legs to tally his first career MLS goal (WATCH).
Looking ahead, the Fire will return to SeatGeek Stadium for a home game against Minnesota United FC on Saturday, May 11. Beginning at 7:00 p.m. CT, the match will be broadcast live on ESPN+ and transmitted locally on Univision Radio WRTO AM 1200.
- Forward Nemanja Nikolić scored a brace in Wednesday’s match, extending his season tally to a team-leading five goals.
- Nikolić has scored 44 goals in three seasons with the Fire.
- With the brace, Nikolić is four goals shy of tying Chris Rolfe for the second-most goals in Club history.
- Gaitán scored his first career MLS goal.
- Frankowski scored his first career MLS goal.
- Bronico scored his first goal of the season and the second of his career. His first career goal was scored on July 14, 2018 versus FC Dallas.
- Gaitán posted two assists in a match for the second time this season. He has four assists in eight games played (six starts) with the Fire, which ranks as the most on the team.
- Katai posted two assists in a match for the first time this season.
- Defender Bastian Schweinsteiger tallied his first assist of the season.
- Recently acquired defender Francisco Calvo made his first start and home debut for the Chicago Fire.
- Wednesday’s match marked the second time the Fire has scored four or more goals this season.
- The Fire notched its third clean sheet of the season on Wednesday.
- The Men in Red extended its all-time record against the Revolution to 27-21-13, including a 17-5-9 mark at home.
Chicago Fire 5:0 New England Revolution
CHI – Nikolić (4) (Gaitán) 28’
CHI – Nikolić (5) (Schweinsteiger, Gaitán) 40’
CHI – Bronico (Katai) 78’
CHI – Gaitán (Katai) 85’
CHI – Frankowski 89’
CHI – Kappelhof (Caution) 55’
NE – Caicedo (Caution) 59’
Chicago Fire: GK Ousted, D Kappelhof, D Calvo, D Schweinsteiger, D Corrales, M McCarty © (Martínez 82’), M Mihailović (Adams 61’), M Frankowski, M Gaitán, M Katai, F Nikolić (Bronico 72’)
Subs not used: Sánchez, Lillard, Campos, Herbers
Shots: 16 Shots on goal: 7 Fouls Committed: 13 Fouls Suffered: 9 Offsides: 4 Corners: 3
New England Revolution: GK Turner, D Anibaba, D Castillo, D Delamea, D Farrell, M Fagundez, M Gil ©, M Zahibo (Agudelo HT), M Caicedo (Bunbury HT), M Buchanan (Jones 74’), F Caicedo
Subs not used: Cropper, Caldwell, Wright, Bye
Shots: 4 Shots on goal: 2 Fouls Committed: 9 Fouls Suffered: 13 Offsides: 1 Corners: 4
Referee: Timothy Ford
Assistant Referees: Adam Garner, Cory Richardson
Fourth Official: Ted Unkel
VAR: Edvin Jurisevic