Metros drop preseason opener to Chicago
February 10, 2004 (Official Game Summary)

4:1
Chicago MetroStars
Ibrahim
Futagaki
Selolwane 2
Renato
02.10.04 · Preseason

The MetroStars dropped a 4-1 result to the Chicago Fire in a pre-season exhibition today at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. The 80-minute game was the Metros first of the preseason and featured two completely different lineups for the Metros in each half.

The Fire struck in the 14th minute of the contest. Chicago midfielder Evan Whitfield played the ball from right wing back to Scott Buete, who then sent the ball across the field into the Metros 18-yard box. MetroStars goalkeeper Zach Wells and defender Jeff Parke leaped with Chicago's Nate Jaqua, and Wells was able to punch the ball out of the area. Sumed Ibrahim pounced on the clearance and immediately volleyed the ball into back of the net past the diving Wells.

In the 37th minute, the Fire scored their second of the game on a 25-yard blast from Ryan Futagaki. Midfielder Andy Williams sent a low corner kick to Jim Curtin at the top of the box. Curtin passed the ball back to a charging Futagaki, who ran onto ball and hit the top left corner.

Two minutes later, the Fire went up 3-0 courtesy of forward Dipsy Selolwane. The Botswana international recovered a loose ball near the top of the box and took a quick shot that found the lower left corner of the goal, just past the outstretched hand of Wells.

The Metros pressured the Fire and had several opportunities in the first half. In the 26th minute, playmaker Amado Guevara hit the crossbar with a rocket of a shot fired from 25-yards out, in the 26th minute. Defender Craig Ziadie found Mike Nugent at the top of the box with a cross. The Princeton product quickly found Guevara, who then ripped the shot.

In the fifth minute, MetroStars draft pick Michael Bradley chipped a pass up the left wing to Nugent, who then sent in a cross to the far post. MetroStars non-roster invite Peter Ofori-Quaye brought the ball down and quickly unleashed a low shot that rolled just wide of the left post.

The Metro got on the scoreboard in the 43rd minute, when Brazilian midfielder Neto played a pass from 35 yards out to forward Olivier Occean at the top of the box. Occean collected the ball, turned past Chicago defender Kelly Gray and charged towards the goal, while fending off Gray. The Southern Connecticut State product then played a perfect pass across the face of the goal to forward Renato, who one-touched the ball into the goal, cutting the Fire lead to 3-1.

Chicago added a fourth goal in the 55th minute, when midfielder Ian Pilarski found forward Nate Jaqua with a cross to the far post. Jaqua nodded the ball toward the lower left corner and goalkeeper Steve Reese made a tremendous diving stop, but Selolwane immediately knocked the rebound into the net.

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