CHICAGO (April 17, 2022) – Chicago Fire FC II fell 4-2 on the road against Toronto FC II, its second road loss of the season. Despite the team’s first two goals in MLS NEXT Pro play, the hosts came back from two different deficits to tie, then take the lead for good. Toronto earned its second win in a row, while this marks Chicago’s third regulation loss of the season.

Alex Monis opened the tally early in the match, getting his head on the receiving end of a cross from Josh Penn in only the fifth minute of play. Monis’ first goal, and Penn’s first assist, were answered in the 21st minute by Toronto left back Kobe Franklin. Fire goalkeeper Mihajlo Mišković kept the score 1-1 throughout the first half after two incredible saves from close range.

In the 59th minute, Mišković began a series of touches by the team, building from the back to eventually reach Richard Fleming III, who found Luka Bezerra at the edge of the six-yard box. Bezerra’s strike put the Fire up 2-1 with a little more than a half hour to go in the match, but Toronto answered less than 10 minutes later with two goals within five minutes by Paul Rothrock and Nakye Greenidge-Duncan. Alec Diaz finished the match off with another goal for the home team in the 88th.

NEXT GAME: Chicago Fire FC II will return to SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview, Ill. next week on Sunday, April 24 to face Philadelphia Union II. All MLS NEXT Pro regular season matches will also be streamed live on mlsnextpro.com.

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

Box Score:

Chicago Fire FC II 2-4 Toronto FC II

CHI - Monis (1) (Penn 1) 5’
TOR - Franklin (1) (Mbongue 1) 21’
CHI - L. Bezerra (1) (Fleming III 1) 59’
TOR - Rothrock (2) (Altobelli 1) 66’
TOR - Greenidge-Duncan (1) (Mbongue 2) 71’
TOR - Diaz (Rothrock 2) 88’

TOR - Mbongue (Yellow Card) 65’
TOR - Antonoglou (Yellow Card) 88’
TOR - Ranjitsingh (Yellow Card) 90+4’

Chicago Fire FC: GK Mišković; D Ostrem, D Quintos, D Baumgartner (Flores, 69’), D Alvarado; M Kidd©, M Fleming III, M Rodriguez; F Penn, F L. Bezerra (Viera, 68’), F Monis (J. Reynolds, 46’)

Subs not used: F Hernandez

Toronto FC II: GK Ranjitsingh©; D Antonoglou, D Goulbourne, D Pearlman (Walkes, 81’), D Franklin; M Altobelli (Sakurai, 72’), M Alonso, M Yeates; F Rothrock, F Mbongue (Diaz, 81’), F Karajovanovic (Greenidge-Duncan, 62’)

Subs not used: GK Gavran; D Cela, D Daher; M Essoussi, M Curic

Stats Summary: 


Shots: 16 / 15
Shots on Goal: 8 / 6
Passing Accuracy: 73.9% / 81.2%
Saves: 4 / 4
Corners: 1 / 6
Fouls: 9 / 6
Offsides: 3 / 2
Possession: 40.9% / 59.1%

Referee: Marie-Soleil Beaudoin

Assistant Referee 1: Twayne Anderson

Assistant Referee 2: Brad Doubrough

Fourth Official: Scott Bowman

Postgame Quotes

Chicago Fire FC II Head Coach Ludovic Taillandier

On the team scoring its first two goals of the season and what they can take away from today as they prepare for next week’s home game…

“That was an important step for sure, to get to score goals. We promote an attacking style of play. And that's a good result in terms of attacking today. But of course, we're not really happy with the way we defend it as a unit. We conceded too many goals of course, and we could have considered a little more than that. We could have scored better, a little more, but that's not a game that we controlled very well. And if you have to score five to win games, it's probably a little too many. We need to do better defensively.”

On giving different players minutes and the importance of adapting and adjusting to MLS Next Pro…

“I mean, that's great. That's great for the players that we train every day, sometimes seven times a week. They were very excited to be able to play games in this professional league. That was a big moment for a lot of them knowing that they didn't play an official game for a long time. That was definitely the first game with the group we train. Then that's also something to have in mind. That's the first game that could not be perfect. But that was definitely a great experience for all the players.”

Chicago Fire FC II Midfielder Matteo Kidd

On what the team learned from today’s result…

“We can definitely learn that we can score goals and we can score goals in bunches if we want to. But at the same time, we can’t give up goals like that. Can’t give up four. But we also grow, it’s the beginning of a long season.”

On the importance of being versatile and adapting to the new league every week…

“Super important. Especially playing for the second team. You need to be able to adapt with guys that are coming down from the first team, importantly all the time. Being able to create a relationship while also playing new teams each week that may have some guys that are from the first team also so it’s definitely an ever-changing league. It’s just exciting and important to get to know everybody.”