Posted on August 5, 2012
BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. — Guatemalan international midfielder Marco Pappa scored the equalizer to help the Chicago Fire rally from a halftime deficit en route to a 2-1 victory over 10-man Toronto FC in Major League Soccer action at Toyota Park on Saturday night.
The Fire improved to 10-7-5 and 35 points and Toronto fell to 5-13-4 with 19 points.
Pappa tested Toronto’s Milos Kocic in the 11th minute as he fired a shot from outside the penalty area to the goalkeeper.
The Fire came out motivated, holding TFC in its own half for much of the early going. The home side’s first chance would come eight minutes in when a ball out of the back was headed first by Alvaro Fernandez and then Dominic Oduro. The Ghanaian nodded it into the path of charging forward Chris Rolfe who took a touch but saw his shot denied by Toronto ‘keeper Milos Kocic.
Toronto FC, however, grabbed the lead when Jamaican international striker Ryan Johnson ran onto an errant pass from Pappa to the backline. Johnson had little problem slotting a shot past goalkeeper Sean Johnson in the 16th minute.
Pappa atoned for his error in the 64th minute. Chris Rolfe flicked theball into the box that saw Doneil Henry’s clearance deflect off of Logan Emory before Pappa ran onto the ball, danced around Kocic and coolly threaded his effort between three defenders and into the far netting to tie the game.
It was Pappa’s sixth goal of the season and moved him into a tie with Peter Nowak for fourth place on the club’s all-time goal-scoring list at 26 apiece.
Pappa almost had a brace in the 72nd minute, when when a Toronto clearance out of the back was headed in by second half substitute Patrick Nyarko. Pappa collected the ball and played a quick combination with Mexican midfielder Pavel Pardo that sprung the Guatemalan into the box but he pulled his shot left, hitting the outside netting.
After Toronto’s Logan Emory was red-carded for his second yellow of the match in the 79th minute, the Fire took advantage of the extra man to tally the game-winner.
Pardo’s in-swinging free kick from the left found the head of Austin Berry, who nodded his effort past Kocic for a 2-1 lead.
Photo: Marco Pappa scored his sixth goal of the season for Chicago. Wade Jackson/YCJ
Categories: Central America, Events, Guatemala, Jamaica, Mexico
Tags: Chicago Fire, Major League Soccer, Marco Pappa, Pavel Pardo, Ryan Johnson, Toronto FC