Match Recap

Chicago Fire FC II Returns Home With 2-0 Win Against Columbus Crew 2


BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. (July 2, 2023) – Chicago Fire FC II (6-6-4-0) returned to SeatGeek Stadium after a two-game road trip with a 2-0 victory over Columbus Crew 2 (9-5-2-2). Defender Charlie Ostrem scored twice in the span of three minutes to reward a strong defensive effort by Chicago’s back line.

Following a lengthy weather delay, the match finally started with Chicago on the initiative. Racking up over 60 percent of possession in the opening half and even forcing seven corner kicks along the way, the Fire pushed for a goal early and often. 

In the 31st minute, Richard Fleming III spotted a wide open Missael Rodríguez on the left flank. The midfielder sent a perfectly placed through ball to Rodríguez, creating a one-on-one situation with Columbus goalkeeper Stas Lapkes. But Lapkes got a toe on the ball to force the Fire forward away from goal, giving his defense enough time to stop the threat. The Crew held on for the remaining quarter of an hour to keep the match scoreless going into the break.

Chicago started the second half just as the first, dictating the pace of the match. Just four minutes into the half, Billy Hency found some space along the right wing. He sent a ball across the box that found Fleming on a late-arriving run. But the midfielder’s one-time effort went sailing inches away from the near post.

The Fire would not rue the missed chance for long. Columbus’ back line tried to clear a ball away from the box in the 52nd minute. But Billy Hency leapt for the ball and headed it in front of Ostrem. The defender allowed it to bounce before unleashing a screamer into the upper 90 of the far post. The 53rd minute tally was his third of the season, tying him with Harold Osorio, Omari Glasgow and Hency for the team lead.

The four-way tie for the team’s scoring lead would be short-lived. Just three minutes later, Glasgow rushed forward from the right wing before crossing into the box. The pass was deflected toward Ostrem, who passed to Fleming at the edge of the box. Fleming immediately returned the ball to the wingback to rip a curling effort away from Lapkes and into the corner of the net for his second of the night. 

Ostrem’s brace gave him sole possession of the team’s golden boot and would prove to be more than enough on another strong defensive night from Chicago. Despite the Crew’s best effort, goalkeeper Jeff Gal stood tall and the Fire walked away with their fourth clean sheet of the season and three points.

Chicago will remain at home on Sunday, July 9 when it faces FC Cincinnati 2 at SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview, Illinois. The match will begin at 5 p.m. CT and can be streamed for free on MLS Season Pass on Apple TV. Match entry and parking will be free for all fans.

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Box Score:Chicago Fire FC II 2:0 Columbus Crew 2

CHI - Ostrem (3) (Hency 1) (WATCH) 53’
CHI - Ostrem (4) (Fleming III 2) (WATCH) 56’ 

CHI - Glasgow (Yellow Card) 25’
CHI - Bezerra (Yellow Card) 65’
CLB - Erlandson (Yellow Card) 67’
CHI - Taillandier (Yellow Card) 90+4’

Chicago Fire FC II: GK Gal; D Ostrem, D Reynolds, D Ueland (capt.) (Leonard 90+4’), D Egan, D Glasgow; M Gallina, M Oregel, Jr. (Monis 61’), M Fleming III (Kidd 85’), F M. Rodríguez (Bezerra 61’)

Subs not used: GK Mišković, D Rochester, M Rocha, M Flores, F Hernandez

Columbus Crew 2: GK Lapkes, D Erlandson, D Ritchie, D Hughes, M Micaletto (capt.) (Gannon 10’), M Mrowka, M De Libera, M Mohamed (Habroune 62’), F Holstad, F Adu-Gyamfi (Bunbury 62’), F Rayo

Subs not used: GK Lozano, D Nero, M Wolf, M Rincon 

Stats Summary: CHI / CLB

Shots: 21 / 8
Shots on Goal: 8 / 3
Passing Accuracy: 82% / 77.4%
Saves: 3 / 6
Corners: 9 / 4
Fouls: 10 / 5
Offsides: 1 / 2
Possession: 52.5% / 47.5%

Referee: Karen Callado
Assistant Ref 1: Justin Mack
Assistant Ref 2: Charles Woodcock
4th Official: Jared Kuehl