CHICAGO (May 21, 2022) – Chicago Fire FC II fell 3-0 on the road against NYCFC II. Second half goals by Justin Haak, Massimo Murania Yankowitz and El Mahdi Youssoufi handed the Fire its first regulation loss in over a month. The clean sheet earned by NYCFC II goalkeeper Luis Barraza also made it the first time Chicago Fire FC II was shut out on the road since the season opener in Orlando.

NYCFC II had the first clear chance of the day, with a 21st minute breakaway leading to a clear look at an empty goal, but Ryan Quintos slid in and tipped the ball away from danger. The Fire got an open look of their own in the 41st, when Alex Monis broke free with the flag down before Stephen Turnbull came in and poked the ball away. The match offered chippy play early on, with both teams combining for five bookings and 19 fouls in the first 45 minutes.

Charlie Ostrem had a one-on-one shot saved by Barraza from close range early in the second half, but the home side struck immediately off a corner headed home by Haak in the 55th minute. After more than 20 minutes of continued pressure, a handball in the box led to a penalty kick scored by Murania Yankowitz. An attempted comeback by the Fire left several players in the opposing half, giving Youssoufi plenty of space on a counterattack to score the third goal and seal the game for NYCFC II.

NEXT GAME: Chicago Fire FC II will stay on the road and travel north of the border as they take on Toronto FC II at York Lions Stadium in Toronto. The match is slated to kick off at 6:00 p.m. CT and will be streamed live on MLSNEXTpro.com.

Social: Twitter - @ChicagoFireNext (Hashtags: #ChicagoFireII) | Instagram - @chicagofirenext | Facebook

Box Score:
Chicago Fire FC II 0 - 3 NYCFC II

NYC - Haak (Denis) 55’
NYC - Murania Yankowitz (P) 78’
NYC - Youssoufi 82’

NYC - Jasson (Yellow Card) 12’
CHI - Quintos (Yellow Card) 16’
NYC - Murania Yankowitz (Yellow Card) 29’
CHI - Penn (Yellow Card) 30’
NYC - Haak (Yellow Card) 42’
NYC - Barraza (Yellow Card) 76’
CHI - Alvarado (Yellow Card) 77’
NYC - Benalcazar (Yellow Card) 89’

Chicago Fire FC II: GK Miskovic; D Ostrem, D Quintos, D Ritaccio © (Burks, 90’), D A. Reynolds II (Alvarado, 55’); M Oregel, Jr. (Kocs-Washburn, 60’), M Kidd, M Fleming III; F M. Rodríguez, F Penn (Hernandez 74’), F Monis (V. Bezerra, 46’)

Subs not used: GK Giron; M A. Rodriguez

NYCFC II: GK Barraza; D Turnbull (Flores, 90+2’), D Benalcazar ©, D Owusu, D Jasson (Bednarsky 63’); M Haak, M Elias, M Beer (Hot, 82’); F Denis, F Youssoufi, F Murania Yankowitz

Subs not used: GK Santucci, GK Rodriguez; F Maia, F Gomez

Stats Summary:

Shots: 17 / 5
Shots on Goal: 6 / 3
Passing Accuracy: 83.4% / 69.6%
Saves: 3 / 2
Corners: 8 / 1
Fouls: 15 / 19
Offsides: 2 / 1
Possession: 60.9% / 39.1%

Referee: Greg Dopka

Assistant Referee 1: Nicola Vesia

Assistant Referee 2: Patrick Slane

Fourth Official: Christian Centeno

Postgame Quotes

Chicago Fire FC II Head Coach Ludovic Taillandier

On his initial thoughts on today’s game…

“Yeah, very tough game. First thing to say is that we had a match against one of the best teams in the league. We struggled taking the ball away from them, they were able to do what they planned to do, we were not able to disturb them in their plan. Of course, it's always a very complicated analysis, we need to see the video first to work on it and understand why we felt pretty much late on every single pressing moment then we didn't find a way to defend the efficiency against them. Again, the first thing to say is that they deserve their win and I was very impressed with their win.”

On the positives he took away from today’s game…

“The positive is that we were able to fight to the end, we didn't give up. We could have scored one at some point, I would’ve been a little happy compared to the difficult game we had. But we could have come back at 2-1 and maybe made the end of the game a little exciting. In general, players fought. As you know, we had a very difficult day yesterday, we arrived at 3 a.m. It was expected that physically, we would be a little heavy, heavy legs. But again, the players were very brave and went through the pain and tried to fight through the end and that's that's a good thing. I am not seeing one player more than the other. But as a team mentality, I was impressed.”

On moving forward to the match against Toronto next week…

“It's a different opponent, with different characteristics. Every game is different. We played Toronto recently. We are, I would say, a fair game in the sense we created some chances, there were chances too then, it was an open game. Very different game that will definitely analyze what we should have done better today. It's a learning experience that will make us better as long as we can analyze the video ourselves and find the solutions to improve our game.”

Chicago Fire FC II Defender Carlo Ritaccio

On taking accountability for the loss…

“It was a tough pill to swallow. I first want to say I'm sorry. You know, it's not just one player, it's 11 players. But me being a leader, I will take accountability for that. And I know we're capable of more, despite the circumstances that may have happened prior to this match. I know we’re capable of more and I know we will rebound. I have 100 percent faith in the team and the staff and the group.”

On the attitude going into Toronto next week…

“We're going to be hungry, we're going to come out hard, we're going to come out wanting to win. It's something that we're striving for as a group, we want to have consistent back-to-back results and points on the road are huge and massive. And we all know in this team what it means and we will be ready for that match.” 

On receiving a great amount of support in New York City…

“It's amazing. Coming back to my hometown in New York, it's an amazing feeling having family come out and support me who helped me on this journey of becoming a professional soccer player. I'm forever indebted to all of them and I am just really grateful that they were here to give me support throughout the whole match.”