Chivas USA fell 2-1 to the Chicago Fire on Saturday morning in a preseason scrimmage played on University Field 2 at The Home Depot Center. The Fire scored twice in the first half, and the Red-and-White pulled one back with 20 minutes remaining on Sacha Kljestan’s penalty kick, but could not find the equalizer.
Chicago had the better of the first half, and got on the board 20 minutes in when Justin Mapp caused a turnover at the corner of the 18-yard box, dribbled in on goal and smashed a shot that goalkeeper Dan Kennedy got a piece of before it went into the net. The Fire struck again seven minutes later when Patrick Nyarko lofted a ball into the middle of the box that striker Brian McBride volleyed past Kennedy to give his club a 2-0 lead.
The second half saw more chances for the Red-and-White, with Kljestan almost scoring on a breakaway just three minutes into the second session. Maykel Galindo entered the match in the 60th minute, getting his first minutes of the year in a preseason scrimmage, and was the catalyst for Chivas USA’s goal when he got behind the Chicago defense and was taken down in the box by Bakary Soumare. Kljestan slotted the resulting penalty kick low and to his right, cutting the deficit in half, but the match ended 2-1 in favor of the Fire.
Chivas USA’s preseason record falls to 4-3-1 (W-L-T) with one game remaining in the preseason. A full preseason schedule for the team, as well as lineups from today’s match, can be found below. Chivas USA kicks off its fifth campaign in Major League Soccer when its hosts the Colorado Rapids in an Opening Day match on Saturday, March 21 at 7:30 p.m. PT at The Home Depot Center. For more information on Chivas USA season tickets, as well as the unbeatable All-Star five-game pack (starting at just $50), please call 1-877-CHIVAS-1 or visit cdchivasusa.com.
Listen to Sacha Kljestan talk about the game and the way the team improved in the second half.
Listen to Chivas USA Coach, Preki, talk about the match and the first time having Maykel Galindo playing for some minutes.