C.J. Sapong scored two of Chicago's four first-half goals as the Fire capped an eventful week with a resounding 4-0 home victory over FC Dallas on Saturday in Bridgeview.
Przemyslaw Frankowski had a goal and an assist, and Nemanja Nikolic scored his 12th goal of the season for Chicago, who has totaled nine goals while winning three straight at home -- where it's in a 3-0-2 stretch.
However, the Fire have just one more regular-season match at their suburban home before playing the 2020 season on Chicago's lakefront at Soldier Field. Desperately trying to find a way into playoff position in the Eastern Conference, the Fire also announced this week that longtime owner Andrew Hauptman sold his controlling interest in the club to minority owner and billionaire Joe Mansueto.
For FC Dallas, who entered just above the playoff line in the West, this could potentially be a devastating defeat in the long run. FCD allowed its most goals of the season while managing just four shots on target after totaling 11 goals while going 2-0-1 in their previous three contests.
It was trouble from the beginning for Dallas after some miscommunication between goalkeeper Jesse Gonzalez and defender Matt Hedges, who never challenged a streaking Sapong. The Chicago striker needed only a small move on Gonzalez, then slipped the ball into an open net in the seventh minute.
The hosts increased their advantage in the 16th minute. This time, Frankowski got behind FCD defender Ryan Hollingshead at the far post and drilled home Brandt Bronico's cross to make to 2-0. Sapong wasn't done, as he out-jumped the pack for a Nico Gaitan corner and headed it by Gonzalez in the 29th minute.
A pretty pass from Frankowski in the box for Nikolic to convert in front of an unprepared Gonzalez in the 39th minute made it 4-0.
Although Dallas pressed and got some quality looks early in the second half, Chicago still played aggressively out of the break. On three occasions, the Fire hit the post in trying to pad their lead further.