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CHICAGO (Aug. 25, 2022) – Chicago Fire FC II earned three home points with a 2-1 victory against Toronto FC II on Thursday night. Missael Rodríguez scored for the second time in as many consecutive matches, and for the fourth time in the last five, while Richard Fleming III added his second goal of the season. Toronto FC II midfielder Steffen Yeates added his third tally of the year. The victory marks the first time this season that the Fire win back-to-back matches in regulation.

Head coach Ludovic Taillandier, Richard Fleming III and Missael Rodríguez had the following thoughts after tonight’s 2-1 victory over Toronto FC II.

Chicago Fire FC II Head Coach Ludovic Taillandier

On tonight's 2-1 victory over Toronto FC II…

“It's two very different games. One game last week where we were, I would say, in good control of the game. With a clear win. Today was different, today was about having the courage and togetherness to fight and to keep the score all the way to the end. Very difficult to answer. Very, very good Toronto team. They are in second place, not for no reason. They are good. They are solid. They go fast there, and that was good for our young players to find the courage and also to be a little less naive than a few months ago. That's the kind of game we lost a few months ago, so definitely we can always see some improvements. Now sometimes you don't have total control of the game, but you have to be brave enough to work it out together. And you can win those games and that's a very good win. That's the first one we win in this style, when it's hard and we find a way to keep the results so that's definitely a good step forward for us.”

On the set pieces and the stellar passing of Sergio Oregel, Jr…

“The set pieces, to be totally honest with you, is not the kind of stuff that we are working the most on because we have players coming from the first team that don't train with us all the time. Then we do things of course, we work on it, but that's not the thing we're working the most on. It's about like you said, the service, mostly the quality of the service. We were not always good at it. But definitely in the last few months, we were able to give good service and again, I would say on this goal like on the two goals last week, the service is probably 75% of the goal on those three.”

On the recent offensive output from the team…

“Yeah. No, that's good. The mentality is fantastic. I mean again, that's a win due to the mentality because we were definitely not the most pretty team in the second half that we're able to, to keep the result and and miss but not just miss are all the players that started on the bench last few games, when they come in, they come in with the right mentality and they definitely finished the job and that's really good. And with the quality you know regarding Trip is a midfielder, a box to box midfielder, he needs to go attack. The difference is he has really good stamina, then he can repeat the sprint the whole game, then that's very precious for the team. So this kind of player can cover your ground. Then generally, he can score a few goals during the season because he's there and is able to adapt to defend and that's good.”

Chicago Fire FC II Midfielder Richard Fleming III

On his goal tonight…

“Yeah. So just kind of ran through the midfield. I saw the play. It was kind of coming from the right hand side, I made a run to kind of open up space. Victor got open behind me and kind of continued my run. Victor led me through, and I was able to finish near post on the goalkeeper and it was good to get a 1-0 lead on a good team, so it was good.”

On the team’s momentum and keeping the playoff dreams alive…

“Yeah, no, it's great to get back to back wins for the first time this season. And I think we're on a really good push right now. We're playing well. We're able to finish out games now. So keeping those playoff hopes alive, I know it's gonna be an uphill battle but we're looking at the next game and looking to get three in a row now.”

On looking ahead to next week’s match against Columbus…

“Really good Columbus team, they've been playing well all year long. Last time unfortunately we had a great first half but we weren't able to finish the game out, and we lost 4-2. But we're going in confident with back to back wins. We're going and we're going to put the pressure on them. We're going to put our press high like we usually do. We're going to stick it to them for sure and go win three games in a row.”

Chicago Fire FC II Forward Missael Rodríguez

On what has changed during a hot scoring streak…

“Just the mentality. I mean, I have to be locked in, whether I get an opportunity or not. I have to go in there and take advantage of every minute. It's just the mentality that has gotten into me.”

On Sergio Oregel, Jr.’s performance…

“Obviously Sergio is very talented. He's a very young, talented player and he knows where to put the ball. So I mean, having a teammate like him on the ball, you know it’s going to come to you and you have to be ready.”

On his work off the bench…

“I mean, like I said, it's a mentality. Coming off the bench isn't easy for any player; you have to be locked in. Obviously, you're disappointed that you don't start and you have something to prove, so you take advantage of every minute. Like I said, I'm locked in and whatever decision the coach makes, it doesn't matter. I'm ready to go.”