U.S. Open Cup
Wolff's first-half tally allows Fire to dispose of spirited crosstown Sockers.CHICAGO -- Josh Wolff's unassisted goal in the 22nd minute gave the Chicago Fire of Major League Soccer (Division I) a hard-fought 1-0 triumph over the Division IV Premier Development League's Chicago Sockers before a standing-room-only crowd of 5,127 at Forest Park View Stadium.
The Fire advanced to a quarterfinal meeting its MLS Central Division rival Dallas Burn.
The score was not indicative of the way the Fire dominated the tie, holding a 12-4 shots advantage and limiting the Sockers to one good scoring opportunity -- Ricardo Costa's offering was saved by a diving Zach Thornton in the 61st minute. The Fire earned a team-record 18 corner kicks.
But the intensity of the battle was made clear by the seven yellow cards issued, five to the heavy underdog Sockers. There were 47 fouls, 31 against the Sockers.
"The Sockers have a great never-say-die attitude and they never quit and played their hearts out," said Fire coach Bob Bradley. "They fought all over the field. We knew it would be a hard game because of their toughness and willingness to fight for 90 minutes, and we knew it would be very physical and they would foul a lot.
"This team, coached by Brett Hall plays a lot like he played, very hard, always hustling, never giving up and very physical. We had our chances but couldn't finish and their keeper made a few great saves to keep them in the game."
In the 22nd minute, Wolff collected a header off defender Matt Bobo and, in full stride, drilled a 22-yarder into the left corner past keeper Adam Throop.
In the losing cause, Throop produced the play of the game, making a spectacular sprawling save to push midfielder Peter Nowak's free kick off the woodwork.
Chicago Fire (MLS) 1, Chicago Sockers (PDL) 0Lineups: Chicago Fire - Zach Thornton, C.J. Brown, Andrew Lewis, Carlos Bocanegra, Jesse Marsch, Chris Armas, Diego Gutierrez (DaMarcus Beasley 17, Sam George 92+), Dema Kovalenko, Peter Nowak, John Wolyniec (Evan Whitfield 62), Josh Wolff. Chicago Sockers - Adam Throop, Matt Bobo, David Lara, Alvin Hudson, Jason Baker, Eric Wilson, Tim Regan, Jason Acres, Joe Carver (Hamid Mehreioskouei 78), Lee Paul (Jimmy Harkness 60), Rodrigo Costa (Jason Kuska 89).
Total shots: Chicago Fire n/a, Chicago Sockers n/a. Shots on goal: Chicago Fire n/a, Chicago Sockers n/a. Saves: Chicago Fire - Thornton n/a; Chicago Sockers - Throop n/a. Fouls: Chicago Fire 16, Chicago Sockers 31. Offside: Chicago Fire n/a, Chicago Sockers n/a. Corner kicks: Chicago Fire n/a, Chicago Sockers n/a. Yellow card cautions: n/a. Red card ejections: Chicago Fire - Polic 90.
Referee: n/a. Referee's assistants: n/a. Attendance: 5,127 at Forest Park View Stadium in Chicago, Ill. Weather: n/a.
Third-round scoreboardWednesday, July 19
Tuesday, July 25
Wednesday, July 26