Fire Earn Fourth U.S. Open Cup Championship
By Todd McClamroch in News on Sep 28, 2006 6:46AM
The Chicago Fire won their fourth U.S. Open Championship and hoisted the Dewar Cup after defeating the Los Angeles Galaxy 3-1 on Wednesday night. In winning this game, the Fire continue a perfect 12-0 home record in U.S. Open competition. The Fire are also the most successful MLS team in U.S. Open Cup history, winning four titles and owning a 24-5-2 record.
The Fire continued to play a dominating style of soccer in which each ball was contested, with most contests won by the Fire. They used precision passing to control the ball and the run of play. It only took ten minutes for the Fire to get on the board when a diving Nate Jaqua was able to put his head on the ball and knock it past L.A. Galaxy Keeper Kevin Hartman. Just six minutes later, Andy Herron uncharacteristically used his head to score the second goal of the match. This goal was Herron's 10th in just twelve games.
In the second half, a desperate Los Angeles Galaxy began to push players forward to try to get back into the game. The Galaxy ended up outshooting the Fire 14-10. In the 52nd minute, L.A. striker Alan Gordon scored a goal for the Galaxy, keeping their hopes alive. But that was the only goal Fire goalkeeper Matt Pickens was to let through the rest of the night. The Fire got an insurance goal from late-second-half sub Thiago. The Fire continue to produce multiple goals while their back line and goalkeeper limit opponents to a single goal.
The Chicago Fire sang and danced with their fans in every corner of Toyota Park after the game, making a special point to visit their diehard Section 8 Fans that sit in the North End of the stadium. Tomorrow, the team returns to practice to start training for the remainder of the season and the Major League Soccer Playoffs.