BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. – The Chicago Fire and the New York Red Bulls are still searching for their first wins of the season after a 1-1 tie at Toyota Park on Sunday.
The hosts got off to a dream start when captain Larentowicz headed home Harry Shipp’s right-wing corner in the sixth minute, rising highest to thunder the ball into the top right corner of the net guarded by netminder Luis Robles.
The visitors had gone close to opening the scoring two minutes earlier when Tim Cahill released Jonny Steele on the left, his cross finding Loyd Sam unmarked at the back post, but the winger could only steer his header into the side netting.
Both sides enjoyed decent spells of possession and chances, with Quincy Amarikwa and Thierry Henry exchanging shots before New York deservedly struck for an equalizer in the 21st minute, as McCarty reacted quickest to slot home in a crowded penalty area following a corner from the right.
The Fire sought the immediate response and went close three minutes later when Shipp’s dangerous free-kick from the left was inadvertently headed by Cahill at his own goal, but Robles made the spectacular reflex save to tip the ball over the bar.
Robles came up with another big save early in the second half, getting down low to his left to turn Alex’s low drive around his left post.
Both sides made attack-minded substitutions -- the Fire brought on Designated Player Juan Luis Anangono and New York introduced Peguy Luyindula -- but the back lines were on top of their game with chances were restricted to a minimum.
But NY's Henry, who operated mainly in midfield, came up with only last opportunity with just minutes left on the clock, whipping in a corner kick from the left that was swatted away by goalkeeper Sean Johnson.
The Fire hit the road to face DC United next Saturday (4 pm ET, NBC Sports Network), while the Red Bulls head home to welcome Chivas USA (3 pm ET, UniMas).
New York Red Bulls 1, Chicago Fire 1
March 23, 2014
MLS Regular Season
TOYOTA Park – Bridgeview, IL
CHI: Jeff Larentowicz 2 (Harrison Shipp 1) 6’
NY: Dax McCarty 1 (unassisted) 21’
CHI: Mike Magee (caution) 13’
NY: Jamison Olave (caution) 30’
NY: Dax McCarty (caution) 74’
NY: Richard Eckersley (caution) 79’
NY: Ibrahim Sekagya (caution) 85’
NY: Tim Cahill (caution) 91’+
New York Red Bulls (0-1-2, 2 pts.): Luis Robles, Richard Eckersley, Jamison Olave, Ibrahim Sekagya, Roy Miller, Lloyd Sam, Eric Alexander (Bobby Convey 83’), Dax McCarty, Jonny Steele (Peguy Luyindula 72’), Tim Cahill, Thierry Henry
Substitutes not used: Ryan Meara, Matt Miazga, Kosuke Kimura, Ruben Bover, Bradley Wright-Phillips
Chicago Fire (0-1-2, 2 pts.): Sean Johnson, Matt Watson, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Bakary Soumare, Greg Cochrane, Harrison Shipp (Juan Luis Anangono 66’), Alex, Jeff Larentowicz, Benji Joya (Victor Pineda 71’), Quincy Amarikwa, Mike Magee
Substitutes not used: Kyle Reynish, Marco Franco, Patrick Ianni, Logan Pause, Giuseppe Gentile
Referee: Drew Fischer
Referee’s Assistants: Anthony Vasoli, Peter Balciunas
4th Referee: Edvin Jurisevic