BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. (July 17, 2019) – The Chicago Fire Soccer Club (5-9-8, 23 points) battled Columbus Crew SC (5-14-3, 18 points) to a 2-2 draw at SeatGeek Stadium on Wednesday night. Receiving goals from midfielder Djordje Mihailović and forward CJ Sapong, the Fire maintained a 2-1 lead for the majority of the second half, but Crew SC managed to level the score against the run of play in the 90th minute.
After a tightly contested start to the match, the Fire nearly opened the scoring in the 26th minute when midfielder Nicolás Gaitán curled a free kick to the far side of the goal, finding defender Francisco Calvo. The Costa Rican international headed the ball back towards the top of the six-yard box, where midfielder Dax McCarty directed a well-placed header on frame, forcing Crew SC goalkeeper Joe Bendik to make a difficult save, tipping the shot over the crossbar (WATCH).
With the team gaining momentum, the Fire took the lead two minutes later when Mihailović scored his third goal of the season. The Men in Red were able to break through after defender Bastian Schweinsteiger found midfielder Przemysław Frankowski deep inside the final third with a long-range pass. After controlling the pass, Frankowski played the ball to Mihailović at the top of the 18-yard box. The U.S. international calmlychested it down, let the ball bounce and then hit a well-struck volley past Bendik (WATCH).
In the 43rd minute, the Fire created another chance when Gaitán slipped the ball through the 18-yard box for Sapong, whose right-footed attempt forced a kick save by Bendik.
At the start of the second half, Crew SC managed to pull one back when midfielder Luis Argudo drove his cross to the near post, finding forward Gyasi Zardes for a finish from close range.
The Fire once again took the lead when Sapong scored his team-leading ninth goal of the season. In the build-up to the goal, Schweinsteiger played a ball into the box that found Gaitán in a position to attempt a bicycle kick. His bike bounced off the post and was cleared away by Crew SC. Regrouping near midfield, the Fire once again went on the attack and a Herbers to Gaitán to Sapong combination allowed the Fire to go in front in the 63rd minute (WATCH).
Four minutes later, the Men in Red had a solid chance to double its lead when Gaitán clipped the ball to the back post to midfielder Aleksandar Katai, whose powerful effort hit Bendik, then hit the post and bounced outin the 67th minute (WATCH).
Crew SC were able to level the score in the final moments of the match when forward Romario Williams scored a header from midfielder Luis Diaz’s deep cross into the 18-yard box.
Looking ahead, the Fire will travel to face the Philadelphia Union at Talen Energy Stadium on Saturday, July 20. Beginning at 6:30 p.m. CT, the match will be broadcast live on ESPN+ and transmitted locally in Spanish on Univision Radio WRTO AM 1200.
Chicago Fire 2:2 Columbus Crew SC
CHI - Mihailović (3) (Frankowski) (5) 28’
CLB - Zardes (7) (Argudo) (1) Sosa (1) 47’
CHI - Sapong (9) 63’
CLB - R. Williams (1) (Díaz) (1) 90’
CHI - Schweinsteiger (Caution) 52’
Chicago Fire: GK Kronholm, D Bronico, D Kappelhof, D Schweinsteiger, D Calvo, M McCarty© (Corrales 80’), M Frankowski, M Herbers, M Mihailović (Katai 57’), M Gaitán (Marcelo 73’), F Sapong
Subs not used: Sánchez, Campos, Moreno, Nikolić
Shots: 19 Shots on goal: 6 Fouls: 10 Offsides: 3 Corners: 7
Columbus Crew SC: GK Bendik, D Afful, D Crognale, D Keita, D Jiménez, M Trapp©, M Clark (Williams 79’), M Accam (Santos 54’), M Sosa (Díaz 65’), M Argudo, F Zardes
Subs not used: Kempin, Francis, Artur, Hansen
Shots: 10 Shots on goal: 5 Fouls: 10 Offsides: 0 Corners: 2
Referee: Armando Villarreal
Assistant Referees: Brian Poeschel, Jose J. Da Silva
Fourth Official: Lorant Varga
VAR: Tim Ford