Chicago Fire FC 0, San Jose Earthquakes 2 | MLS is Back Tournament Match Recap
Chris Wondolowski scored his 161st career MLS goal, Cristian Espinoza added his first in more than a calendar year, and the San Jose Earthquakes wrapped up the top spot in Group B of the MLS is Back Tournament on Sunday night with a 2-0 victory over the Chicago Fire.
Wondolowski's second goal of the tournament (and the season) came just seconds after his entry as a substitute. Espinoza's came more than 15 months after his previous contribution on April 6, 2019, and was just his third since he arrived at San Jose early last season.
The Quakes dominated the ball through most of the encounter against a Chicago side that looked more disjointed than in their group-opening victory over Seattle. San Jose has now scored five unanswered goals since they trailed by two in what finished a 4-3 victory over Vancouver in their second group match back on Wednesday.
The Fire also saw Luka Stojanovic's first MLS start shortened to 45 minutes when he was forced out with an apparent leg injury moments before halftime.
Man of the Match presented by Heineken
Jackson Yueill. The American was at the center of a Quakes midfield that grew increasingly dominant as the second half wore on, and his excellent through-ball set up Espinoza's opener.
- THE BIG PICTURE: While the Fire lost their chance to top Group B, they still control their own destiny in terms of reaching the round of 16. A win over Vancouver on Thursday would guarantee them six points and a second-place group finish.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: While Espinoza has always been more provider than scorer, he showed a forward's instincts on the finish, improving his angle on his first two touches of Yueill's through-ball, then driving a clean finish past Kenneth Kronholm with his third.
- YOU MAY HAVE MISSED: After a cagey first half and start to the second, some low-level fisticuffs broke out near the San Jose Earthquakes bench. Judson picked up a yellow for his troubles, and more importantly, the match picked up steam from there on.
- CHI: Thursday, July 23 vs. Vancouver Whitecaps (9 am ET | ESPN, ESPN Deportes in US; TSN in Canada)
- SJ: Monday, July 27 vs. TBD, Round of 16 (8:30 pm ET | FS1, FOX Deportes in US; TSN in Canada)