Schweinsteiger scores in his MLS debut, Fire ties Impact 2-2

Schweinsteiger scores in his MLS debut, Fire ties Impact 2-2

BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. — Montreal Impact head coach Mauro Biello had a simple message after his team conceded a late goal on Saturday, leading to a 2-2 draw with the Chicago Fire.

Take the point and work harder for the next one.

Chicago’s Luis Solignac scored in second-half stoppage time after Ballou Jean-Yves Tabla, making his first MLS start, sent a shot from distance in the 90th minute to give Montreal a 2-1 lead.

“Although many of our players hadn’t played together before, we showed character against a very good team,” said Biello. “We still have to keep working on finding solutions for a number of things, and we have to continue moving forward.

“We’ll take the road point and we see positives, but there’s still work to be done.”

Bastian Schweinsteiger scored in his MLS debut for the Fire. Matteo Mancosu had the Impact’s other goal.

Schweinsteiger, a World Cup winner with Germany, was acquired from Manchester United on March 21st after the 32-year-old struggled to replicate the highs of his Bayern Munich career.

Schweinsteiger headed in David Accam’s cross in the 17th minute to give Chicago a 1-0 lead. The Fire played the short option on a corner kick and Schweinsteiger was unmarked in the box.

Mancosu headed in Chris Duvall’s cross at the back post as Montreal tied it at 1-all in the 61st minute.

“This group shouldn’t ever be satisfied – even with a win, there are still things to work on,” said Duvall. “It’s a good road point, and taking points from an Eastern Conference opponent at its home is good for us, but we’re always hoping for more, and we could have had the three points. It’s frustrating, but we’ll focus on the positives.”

Chicago’s Juninho was shown his second yellow card in the 71st for breaking up a counter attack near midfield. Montreal’s Víctor Cabrera was given a red card in the 80th for bringing down Solignac on a breakaway.

The Impact thought it had clinched the three points in the 90th minute when Patrice Bernier fed Tabla alone on the left.

Tabla squeezed in a shot, giving the Impact a late lead. Tabla, who celebrated his 18th birthday on Friday, became the youngest goal scorer in Impact history, dethroning Jason Di Tullio (18 and six months) for that record.

“I tried to unsettle defenders in the first half, and I realized that simply taking a touch and a shot could take the goalkeeper and defenders by surprise,” said Tabla. “I thought I’d try my luck on the next play. Conceding that goal at the end is disappointing, but we’ll take the point and work in order for that not to happen again.”

The home team made it 2-2 in the third minute of stoppage time when Dax McCarty fed Solignac on the edge of the area. Solignac cushioned the ball and slammed it home, beating goalkeeper Evan Bush to his right.

— With files from The Canadian Press

The Associated Press