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Strong first half lifts Houston Dynamo over visiting Chicago Fire

A two goal first half was all the Houston Dynamo needed to get the three points over the visiting Chicago Fire

MLS: Chicago Fire at Houston Dynamo FC Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Houston Dynamo FC looked to turn around a three game losing streak across all competitions as they came back home to PNC Stadium to face the struggling Eastern Conference foe in the Chicago Fire. Though the Fire looked threatening at times, it would be the Dynamo to be the ones in control of this one at PNC Stadium in their 2-0 win.

The Dynamo began the game controlling the tempo, but the Fire were engaged as well earning the game’s first quality chance on goal. A wonderful long ball from around the center circle put Stanislav Ivanov through on goal. Even though he had a cut back to a rushing player he faked the pass and had the shot himself which glanced just wide for the visitors.

Houston tried to respond a few minutes later in a similar, but more dramatic fashion with their own ball from the center circle to a player. Daniel Steres played a long over the top ball to Thorleifur Úlfarsson who attempted to head the ball from distance into the goal, but it too went wide to keep the game level.

It wouldn’t be too much longer for Thor to hit the back of the net though in just the 23rd minute. Memo Rodríguez delivered a cross from the endline towards Thor and his header was deflected back to him. He collected the ball and floated a ball back post over Fire goalkeeper Gabriel Slonina. 1-0 Houston.

It nearly became 2-0 about 10 minutes later with a cross being sent in from the left side of the field towards Dynamo designated player Sebastián Ferreira. Sebas headed the ball over to the run of Darwin Quintero who cut the ball back to Sebas, but Quintero was ultimately ruled to be in an offside position even though the ball did find the back of the net.

Quintero would himself get on the score sheet not long after in stoppage time of the first half. A brilliant cross from the left by Adam Lundkvist to Quintero in the box saw Quintero take a touch through traffic to fire a shot underneath the Fire goalkeeper. 2-0 Houston.

Houston would go into halftime with a two goal lead. The Dynamo had been the team that had largely controlled the pace of the game, but the Fire utilized a few good counter opportunities and set pieces to threaten the Dynamo back line, but the defense for the home side were largely up to task to handle the threats.

A little over 10 minutes into the second half, the Dynamo thought they had a third goal with Quintero as the playmaker this time. A long threaded through ball to the streaking run of Sebas Ferreira saw the center forward on goal and put it passed the Fire goalkeeper, but the effort was eventually disallowed by a VAR decision.

The Fire had a wonderful opportunity to bring the game within one with a little over 10 minutes to go as they found themselves with another set piece opportunity. The long pass was delivered into around the 6 yard box and then headed across goal, but was cleared with an overhead kick by Dynamo defender Adam Lundkvist.

After an exhausting 8 minutes of stoppage time, it would be the Dynamo to get the much needed three points at home along with the clean sheet. Houston was largely in charge of this one from the opening whistle as they had several quality chances and controlled the tempo of the game. Chicago picked their chances to get back in it fairly well, but weren’t able to capitalize on the opportunities they had.

The Dynamo will have a short turnaround as they head back on the road this Wednesday as they travel to the West Coast to take on the Portland Timbers on June 29th at 9:30 PM CT.


23’ HOU: Thorleifur Úlfarsson

45’+2’ HOU: Darwin Quintero (assisted by Adam Lundkvist


38’ CHI: Federico Navarro (yellow card)

41’ HOU: Memo Rodríguez (yellow card)

64’ HOU: Daniel Steres (yellow card)

79’ HOU: Darwin Cerén (yellow card)

81’ CHI: Jhon Espinoza (yellow card)

90’+2’ HOU: Tim Parker (yellow card)


Houston Dynamo:

70’ Tyler Pasher on, Memo Rodríguez off

70’ Tim Parker on, Daniel Steres off

73’ Adabalerto “Coco” Carrasquilla on, Darwin Quintero off

87’ Beto Avila on, Sebastián Ferreira off

87’ Griffin Dorsey on, Thorleifur Úlfarsson off

Chicago Fire:

46’ Fabian Herbers on, Brian Gutiérrez off

59’ Jhon Espinoza on, Stanislav Ivanov off

67’ Jhon Durán on, Kacper Przybyłko off

80’ Andre Reynolds II on, Jonathan Bornstein off

80’ Chinonso Offor on, Miguel Navarro off