Sep 12, 2012; Toronto, ON, Canada; Chicago Fire forward Patrick Nyarko (14) celebrates a goal scored by midfielder Alvaro Fernandez (4) along with forward Chris Rolfe (18) in the first half against the Toronto FC at BMO Field. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-US PRESSWIRE
Chicago defeated Toronto, but only barely after the Reds came on strong late.
Toronto FC are bad. There is a reason they are in the MLS cellar, but that didn't take away from the Chicago Fire's 2-1 win at BMO Field on Wednesday. Any time a team can go on the road and get three points it is a job well done and when that squad happens to right in the thick of a playoff race like the Fire are, that win is especially valuable.
Alvaro Fernandez put the Fire in front after 13 minutes, heading a Pavel Pardo cross home to bring out the boo birds in Toronto. The play started with a bad giveaway by the Reds and then some nifty footwork by Fernandez to break free. He fed Chris Rolfe, who played a first time cross for Pardo, but the Mexican missed the open goal. His shot clattered off the post, but he was able to get it back and after taking it out to the left, he chipped the ball back into the middle for Fernandez to finish.
Rolfe doubled the visitors' lead before the break when Toronto's clearance only made it as far at the edge of the box. That is where Rolfe was waiting to rip a low shot that somehow managed to make it through the traffic in front and through to goal.
Toronto did their best to make a comeback with a 79th minute goal that brought them within one. Eric Hassli finished a gorgeous passing sequence to get the Reds within striking distance and not long after it looked like they would surely equalize, but a tremendous diving save by Sean Johnson kept the shot out to preserve the win.