2009 May 2

Ten Sounders earn draw in Chicago

Chicago Fire  1 - 1  Seattle Sounders FC

Toyota Park, Bridgeview, IL

68' CHI: Marco Pappa (Cuauhtemoc Blanco)
74' SEA: Tyrone Marshall (Freddie Ljungberg)

Chicago: Jon Busch; Bakary Soumare, Wilman Conde, Gonzalo Segares (Brandon Prideaus 71'), Tim Ward; Logan Pause, Marco Pappa (Mike Banner 82'), Cuauhtemoc Blanco, John Thorrington (Chris Rolfe 66'); Patrick Nyarko, Brian McBride. Substitutes not used: Andrew Dykstra, Baggio Husidic, Dasan Robinson, Austin Washington.

Seattle: Kasey Keller; Nathan Sturgis, Tyrone Marshall, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, James Riley; Steve Zakuani (Sebastien Le Toux 56'), Osvaldo Alonso, Freddie Ljungberg (Stephen King 81'), Brad Evans; Fredy Montero (sent off 48'), Nate Jaqua. Substitutes not used: Chris Eylander, Patrick Ianni, Zach Scott, Taylor Graham, Sanna Nyassi.

Match report by Ron Stickney

In a match between two of the top three ranked teams in the league, the Seattle Sounders fought back with ten men to earn a draw with the Chicago Fire at Toyota Park in the Chicago metropolitan area. After Fredy Montero was sent off at the beginning of the second half, Marco Pappa gave the Fire a lead. But Tyrone Marshall's first goal of the year leveled the score shortly thereafter, and the final twenty minutes went scoreless.

The first half was almost all Chicago, with the Sounders on their heels. The Sounders were lucky to go into halftime with goose eggs on the scoreboard.

Challenging for fastest yellow card in MLS history, Marshall earned one in the first minute when he fouled Brian McBride at the touch line.

Seattle looked good for the first few minutes, but in the 9th minute it was Chicago who threatened first. McBride got into the penalty area but was tackled, giving up a loose ball. Goalkeeper Kasey Keller came out and deflected the loose ball, but still needed his defense to come up with a big play to clear the ball sideways to end the danger.

Pappa took the first shot of the match from the arc on 12' after a back-heel bass by Cuauhtemoc Blanco, but missed by a mile. Chicago right back Tim Ward had the next shot, volleying a cleared corner kick two yards wide. Ward would threaten Seattle all match long from the right side.

Chicago came oh so close at 20' when John Thorrington's nice cross from the right gave a sliding chance to Patrick Nyarko, but his rocket of a shot hit the far post squarely and rebounded far outside the penalty area. The first save of the match came at 29' when Pappa shot low up the middle, but right at Keller.

After being dominated for a half hour, Seattle's first chance came at 32' when Steve Zakuani worked free in the penalty area for a quick shot/cross from the left that flashed a yard from the far post and a yard from the man on the far-post run.

Chicago was whistled for only one foul in the first half, at 35'.

Chicago resumed their pressure near the end of the half. Nyarko's cross from the right flashed through the goal area, just out of reach of a sliding McBride. Blanco's quick shot from the top of the arc lacked pace and was an easy save for Keller. Pappa's shot from wide left was watched wide of the near post by Keller.

Seattle had a corner kick just before the break, but Nate Jaqua's header was well over the bar.

Halftime: Chicago 0 - 0 Seattle

Seattle put themselves in a difficult position at 48' when Montero threw an elbow that he didn't need to. It got Gonzalo Segares in the forehead, but didn't draw blood. Montero was sent off, leaving Seattle to battle short-handed.

Bakary Soumare earned a yellow card at 55' when he challenged Keller in front of goal and tried the Hand of God move.

Seattle substituted Sebastien Le Toux for Zakuani at 56' and then seemed to gain the momentum even though playing with ten men.

The first shot of the half didn't come until 64', when Thorrington shot well wide on a put-back of a cleared Blanco corner kick.

68' CHI: Pappa (Blanco). Beating Nathan Sturgis for the cross, Blanco fed Pappa on a run up the middle. From 20 yards, Pappa beat Keller with a low shot to the near post. Keller may have been screened on the play, as he was late with the dive. It was Keller's first goal conceded in MLS play. 1-0 Chicago.

71' SEA: Marshall (Ljungberg). Seattle came right back on a set play. Le Toux earned a corner kick on the right. Freddie Ljungberg's corner kick cleared a crowd at the near post, with Jaqua drawing about three defenders in the air. The ball made it past the crowd to an open Marshall, who shot low to the far corner for the first ever Sounders FC goal by a defender. 1-1.

Seattle's defense prevented any really good chances the rest of the way. Nyarko did earn a couple of shots, a header from a corner kick play, saved by Keller, and a shot from wide left, taken by Keller. Blanco's long-range rocket missed the target, and then at 90' from a broken corner kick play he earned a shot that deflected off Osvaldo Alonso and was saved by Keller at the near post.

Final: Chicago 1 - 1 Seattle

          CHI  SEA
Shots:     15    4
Saves:      1    5
Corners:    7    3
Fouls:      8    9
Offsides:   4    2

1' SEA: Marshall cautioned on first fould of the match, on McBride at the touch line
48' SEA: Montero sent off for throwing an elbow in the air against Pappa
55' CHI: Soumare cautioned for a Hand of God move in the Seattle goal area
90' CHI and SEA: Rolfe and Riley each cautioned after a challenge

Referees: Jasen Anno; Sean Hurd, Peter Manikowski; Michael Kennedy

Attendance: 10,288

Additional match reports: