ORLANDO, Fla. (July 19, 2020) - Chicago Fire FC (MLS is Back Tournament: 1-1-0, 3 points / MLS regular season: 1-2-1, 4 points) fell 2-0 to the San Jose Earthquakes (MLS is Back Tournament: 2-0-1, 7 points / MLS regular season: 2-1-2, 8 points) in its second match of the MLS is Back Tournament at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports in Orlando, Florida.
The Earthquakes took the lead 11 minutes into the second half when midfielder Jackson Yueill slipped through a ball to Cristian Espinoza who found the back of the net to put San Jose in the lead. Chicago had an apparent 70th-minute equalizer from forward Robert Berić disallowed due to a Fire foul in the buildup. In the 83rd minute, Chris Wondolowski, MLS’ all-time leading scorer, would score his 161st career goal securing the Earthquakes’ victory. San Jose has locked up first place in Group B. To view the MLS is Back Tournament standings, click here.
Next on the schedule: Chicago will close out the MLS is Back group stage against Vancouver Whitecaps FC on Thursday, July 23. With a win over Vancouver, the Fire can advance out of Group B with a second-place finish. Beginning at 8:00 a.m. CT, the match will be televised nationally on ESPN and ESPN Deportes and transmitted locally in Spanish on TUDN 1200AM.
- Sunday’s match marked the Fire’s second game in the MLS is Back Tournament and fourth overall match in 2020.
- Tonight’s result counts towards Group B in the MLS is Back tournament and the 2020 regular season standings. The Fire currently sit in second place in Group B with three points.
- Chicago now holds a 16-12-11 all-time record against the San Jose Earthquakes.
- Defender Francisco Calvo captained the Fire and wore a captain’s armband that represents the Black Lives Matter movement. The armband was designed by Chicago-based artist and former Northwestern student-athlete Dwight White. For more information on the design, click here. Calvo has worn the captain’s armband in all four games this season.
- Defender Miguel Ángel Navarro and midfielder Luka Stojanović made their first career MLS starts for the Fire in Sunday’s contest.
- Midfielder Ignacio Aliseda made his first career MLS appearance for the Fire.
- Tonight’s match was the first time that all three of the Fire’s designated players (Aliseda, Berić and Giménez) were on the field together.
- In partnership with Continental Tire, the Fire hosted a “Drive-In Matchday” at Soldier Field tonight, providing fans with a unique opportunity to watch the team’s contest against the Earthquakes. Footage and photos from the drive-in watch party are now available and can be accessed by clicking here.
- SJ forward Chris Wondolowski, MLS’ all-time leading scorer, tallied the 161st goal of his career with his goal in the 83rd minute.
SJ - Cristian Espinoza 56th minute (WATCH): San Jose managed to take the lead 11 minutes into the second half when midfielder Cristian Espinoza fired a shot into the back of the net.
SJ - Chris Wondolowski 83rd minute (WATCH): Earthquakes substitute Carlos Fierro found the head of a bolting Chris Wondolowski who headed the ball with power for San Jose’s second goal.
Key attacking plays:
CHI – Robert Berić 20th minute: After receiving the ball on the right side of the 18-yard box, forward Robert Berić took a touch before driving a cross into a dangerous area. Sliding into the six-yard box, Sapong just missed Berić’s cross for a close-range finish.
CHI – Luka Stojanović 36th minute: Defender Boris Sekulic ventured forward and floated a cross toward the back post, finding midfielder Luka Stojanović for a header that forced a save from goalkeeper Daniel Vega.
CHI – Robert Berić 59th minute: With the Fire attacking on the break, midfielder Álvaro Medrán played a quick through ball for Berić. After battling with his defender to maintain possession, Berić fired a low, driven shot on target to force another save by Vega.
CHI – Fabian Herbers 66th minute: Running onto a well-played through ball from Medrán, second half substitute Fabian Herbers darted into the box and fired a close-range shot that was blocked by a sliding challenge from defender Florian Jungwirth.
Stops and key defensive plays:
CHI - Kenneth Kronholm 3rd minute (WATCH): Goalkeeper Kenneth Kronholm was called upon to make his first save of the game in the 3rd minute, diving to his left to save a low, powerful effort from midfielder Judson.
Chicago Fire FC 0:2 San Jose Earthquakes
SJ - Espinoza (1) (Yueill 1) 56’
SJ - Wondolowski (2) (Fierro 1, Thompson 1) 83’
CHI - Sekulić (Caution) 29’
CHI - Jungwirth (Caution) 37’
SJ - Judson (Caution) 50’
CHI - Medrán (Caution) 53’
CHI - Giménez (Caution) 58’
CHI - Herbers (Caution) 61’
CHI - Pineda (Caution ) 62’
SJ - Eriksson (Caution) 86’
Chicago Fire FC: GK Kronholm, D Frankowski, D Sekulić (M Aliseda 90’), D Pineda (M Mihailović 72’), D Calvo ©, D Navarro, M Giménez, M Medrán, M Stojanović (F Herbers 45+2’), F Berić, F Sapong (F Collier 71’)
Subs not used: GK Sparrow, GK G. Slonina, D Omsberg, D N. Slonina, D Bornstein, D Reynolds II, M Bronico, M Casas
Shots: 8 Shots on goal: 3 Fouls: 23 Offsides: 2 Corners: 3 Possession: 36.9%
San Jose Earthquakes: GK Vega, D Jungwirth, D Lima (F Hoesen 82’), D Marie (D Thompson 69’), D Kashia, M Eriksson ©, M Yueill, M Judson (F Wondolowski 82’), F Espinoza (F Fierro 82’), F Vako (F Salinas 69’), F Rios
Subs not used: GK Bersano, D Alanis, D Beason, M Calvillo, M Felipe, M Skahan, F Cowell
Shots: 11 Shots on goal: 3 Fouls: 11 Offsides: 1 Corners: 5 Possession: 63.1%
Referee: Ramy Touchan
Assistant Referees: Cameron Blanchard, Chris Wattam
Fourth Official: Victor Rivas
VAR: Ismail Elfath