Chicago Fire (MLS) 2, Columbus Crew SC (MLS) 1
After the two sides played to a 0-0 draw in MLS play back in March, the home club Chicago Fire emphasized the attack from the start and found their breakthrough via star attacker David Accam. The Ghanaian striker put the Fire ahead in the seventh minute when he juked a defender on the left before curling a lovely ball inside the far right post. Accam bagged his second goal of the match in the 30th minute when right back Rodrigo Ramos served a ball to the back post that allowed the Ghanaian an easy, one-time tap-in to give the Fire a 2-0 halftime lead. With some attacking substitutions, Crew SC controlled the possession in the second half, but couldn’t only muster a 79th minute penalty kick from Ethan Finlay following a hand ball in the box. The victory moved Chicago to its 13th Quarterfinal appearance and improved the club’s record to 27-1-2 in Open Cup matches played in the state of Illinois. The four-time champions will host the winner of Wednesday’s Orlando City SC-Fort Lauderdale Strikers match on July 20.
Chicago Fire (MLS) vs. Columbus Crew SC (MLS)
Time/Location: 7:30 p.m. CT; Toyota Park; Bridgeview, Ill.
Chicago Fire Best Finish: Champions (1998, 2000, 2003, 2006)
Columbus Crew SC Best Finish: Champions (2002)
Broadcast: U.S. Soccer YouTube
- The Chicago Fire arrived in the Round of 16 by drawing 1-1 with Indy Eleven before winning 4-3 on penalty kicks. David Accam scored the Fire’s equalizer in the 111th minute of extra time.
- Columbus arrived in the Round of 16 thanks to a 4-0 win against the Tampa Bay Rowdies. Justin Meram, Cristian Martinez, Ethan Finlay and Marshall Hollingsworth all scored for Crew SC in the win.
- A rematch of the 1998 Final, this match marks the sixth meeting between the two sides in the competition, with the Fire holding a perfect 5-0-0 record.
- Previous results: Chicago Fire 2, Columbus Crew SC 1 asdet (1998 Final); Chicago Fire 2, Columbus Crew SC 1 asdet (2004 Fourth Round); Chicago Fire 3, Columbus Crew SC 2 aet (2008 Qualifying); Chicago Fire 2, Columbus Crew SC 1 (2013 Fourth Round); Chicago Fire 4, Columbus Crew SC 2 aet (2014 Fourth Round).
- With four U.S. Open Cup titles, the Chicago Fire are tied for second-most championships all-time along with Seattle Sounders FC, Fall River Marksmen, New York Greek American and Philadelphia Ukrainians.
- The Chicago Fire have advanced to the Semifinals in four of the last five U.S. Open Cup tournaments and last advanced to the Final in 2011.
- Chicago Fire assistant coach Logan Pause won two U.S. Open Cups with the club in 2003 and 2006.
- Columbus Crew SC assistant Josh Wolff also won two U.S. Open Cup titles with the Fire in 1998 and 2000. Goalkeeping coach Pat Onstad also backstopped the Rochester Rhinos on a Cinderella run to the 1999 U.S. Open Cup title.
- The two sides have met once already during the MLS season, playing to a 0-0 draw on March 19 at Toyota Park.
- The winner of this match will host the winner of Orlando City SC and Fort Lauderdale Strikers in the Quarterfinals on July 19/20.