BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. – Chicago Fire defender Cory Gibbs didn’t want to comment about his ejection from Saturday’s 3-2 win over Chivas USA, but the veteran defender couldn’t quite hold himself back when asked about it after the match.
“I don’t really want to express how I feel about it,” said Gibbs, who also scored the opener in the second minute. “It was a hard tackle. Would I have given a red? Definitely — probably — a yellow. But that’s the referee’s discretion and it was just unprofessional of me at the time.”
Fire interim head coach Frank Klopas agreed, saying he thought Gibbs’s challenge on Michael Lahoud was similar to one for which Lahoud was shown yellow in the fifth minute.
“I thought it was harsh, a little bit,” Klopas said. “I thought it was maybe a yellow, but I have to see it again. It kind of seemed very similar to me to the Lahoud play and it changed the game a lot.”
Chicago struggled after Gibbs’s ejection, losing the 2-0 lead they held when the veteran center back was tossed by giving up goals in the 61st and 63rd minutes. It didn’t look like the 10-man Fire had much hope of getting a much-needed victory, but forward Dominic Oduro secured the three points – and took Gibbs off the hook – with an 85th-minute tap-in.
“It’s amazing,” Gibbs said. “It’s a great feeling in the 85th minute seeing Oduro score that goal. It almost pulled me out of a grave. I was really down on myself for [the red card] and the team, how relentless they were for that whole time frame, was just amazing.”
“I hold responsibility for the situation we were put into,” he added. “But most congratulations to the team for pulling it out.”
Sam Stejskal covers the Chicago Fire for MLSsoccer.com. E-mail him at email@example.com.