The tape of this one doesn't belong in a time capsule. But pretty or not, the Chicago Fire were more than happy to take both a road point and their first shutout of the season, thanks to a scoreless draw in Commerce City against the Colorado Rapids.
“I thought it was a scrappy game. I don’t think either team really played that well," Fire head coach Frank Yallop said afterward. "All-in-all, really happy with the point, not pleased with the performance. Having said that, I thought the guys really fought tonight. Effort was brilliant, absolutely fantastic. We didn’t play well but you can’t always play well.”
The Fire certainly didn't do that, barely threatening the Rapids defense. The closest they came to breaching goal was midway through the second half when Rapids 'keeper John Berner rushed well off his line to try to beat Chicago's Juan Luis Anangono to a chip over the top.
Anangono got there first and had the goal at his mercy. True to form, he pushed his header into the side-netting.
“I think in the first half we struggled to keep the ball, especially through the middle," said rookie Harrison Shipp, who started on the bench before coming on in the second half to provide a jolt that just wasn't to be. "It was tough for Jeff [Larentowicz] to get the ball and kind of face up and play. Partly cause they were trying to clog the middle, partly cause we really didn’t try to play.”
If there was a bright spot, performance wise, it was from goalkeeper Sean Johnson. He got down well to push aside Charles Eloundou's blast in the 36th minute, and generally controlled his box like the veteran he now is.
"I’m happy for everybody, not just the defenders in front of me but all the guys on the field that worked over 90 minutes to grind and get the result," Johnson offered. "Now we have to look to build and keep going and look forward to Seattle on Saturday and look to get another result.”