2-1 defeat by Kansas City ends Fire’s no-losses streak
BY SETH GRUEN For Sun-Times Media July 7, 2013 7:56PM
Sporting Kansas City v Chicago Fire
Updated: July 7, 2013 9:07PM
With the Fire not having lost since forward Mike Magee joined the team in late May, the mood in the locker room had been jovial heading into Sunday’s game against Sporting Kansas City at Toyota Park.
But after playing an uninspired second half and losing 2-1, the Fire was introduced to an entirely new Magee, visibly upset and not holding back in calling out his entire team.
The loss was the Fire’s first since it fell 1-0 in Philadelphia on May 18. It ended a streak of nine games without a loss across all competitions.
‘‘It’s OK if the soccer is not good or we’re not creating chances, but I can’t remember a time in the second half where in the run of play we had three players in our attacking box, which is a joke,’’ Magee said. ‘‘It’s unacceptable. It basically seemed like we were content to just lose the game 2-1.
‘‘We started the game like [crap], and then we somehow managed to finish the game even worse.’’
The first half seemed to follow a familiar script, only the Fire wasn’t able to muster one of the dramatic comebacks that had been a staple of its streak.
Kansas City’s Benny Feilhaber scored in the sixth minute after he one-touched a bouncing ball at the top of the box. Graham Zusi made it 2-0 in the eighth minute when he struck the ball from several yards from the corner of the box into the upper corner of the far post, though he intended to just cross the ball.
Magee brought the game to within one when he scored his 11th goal of the season in the 38th minute, but the Fire never looked like it would come back during a second half in which it rarely created chances and was dominated in possession. Kansas City had the ball 61.6 percent of the time in the final 45 minutes.
‘‘It’s very difficult when you fall behind that early 2-0, because on a hot day like this you have to put a lot of energy to come back,’’ Fire coach Frank Klopas said. ‘‘We got the one goal, which was important, but the second half we got in some good chances and we weren’t able to come back.’’