[MLS] An offside goal that was allowed, a not-offside goal that was disallowed, a goal correctly disallowed for offside, a goal given away with a terrible defensive error, and a seemingly sure goal fluffed a la Kei Kamara ... all of this and more transpired Thursday at Toyota Park.
The host Fire tied FC Dallas, 1-1, as Brian McBride -- who was offside when he headed in a Justin Mapp cross -- and David Ferreira – who scooped up a misplay by defender Wilman Conde -- traded goals in a game notable more for its sloppiness than its polish.
Ferreira scored in the sixth minute when right back Zach Loyd banged the ball upfield and Conde’s clumsy attempt at a clearance caromed off Ferreira toward the goal. The Dallas attacker did the rest, knifing inside C.J. Brown’s desperate challenge to power a left-footed shot past keeper Andy Dykstra into the top corner. The rickety play of Conde in recent games has cost the Fire goals and points.
Brek Shea ghosted in behind the Fire back line to reach a through ball and fired a shot that should have made it 2-0, but the assistant referee’s flag went up, incorrectly, for offside. As he ran back upfield, Shea angrily waved his arm in disgust at what turned out to be a very costly decision as FCD’s remarkable six-game winning streak in road games against Chicago came to an end.
FCD’s Jair Benitez saved a goal for his team when he got a piece of a point-blank Baggio Husidic header from a Mike Banner cross, then Banner fluffed what should have been an equalizer 10 minutes before halftime. Justin Mapp, whose work on the left flank forced the FCD defense to scramble several times, centered a skimming ball that Banner somehow skied over the bar from three yards out in what was the worst MLS miss since the blooper by Kansas City's Kamara against the Galaxy.
In the 40th minute, Mapp got free on the left again and lofted a cross that McBride – a yard behind the last defender – headed crisply past Kevin Hartman. Defender Ugo Ihemelu looked incredulously at the referee’s assistant on his side of the field but the flag had stayed down.
Collins John came on as a sub in the second half and shot into the side netting from a tight angle with one of the few scoring chances of a disjointed second half. Another sub, FCD defender Heath Pearce – who was released from the U.S. World Cup training camp Wednesday -- played the last 20 minutes.
The teams combined for 19 shots but only five were on target. They have also combined to tie 10 of their 19 games; Chicago is 2-3-4, FCD is 2-2-6.
Both teams return to league play next weekend at home. Chicago hosts Philadelphia and FCD plays San Jose.
May 27 in Bridgeview, Ill.
Chicago 1, FC Dallas 1. Goals: McBride (Mapp) 40; Ferreira 6.
Chicago – Dykstra; Robinson, Brown, Conde, Krol, Banner (Pappa, 68), Pause, Mapp (John, 58), Husidic, Nyarko, McBride.
FC Dallas – Hartman; Loyd, John, Ihemelu, Benitez, McCarty (Guarda, 60), Hernandez, Shea (Yeisley, 81), Ferreira, Cunningham (Pearce, 70), Harris.
Referee: Baldomero Toledo.