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MLS Game Summary - Chicago at San Jose



(Saturday, April 12, 2008)

From The Sports Network

Final Score: Chicago 1, San Jose 0

Oakland, CA (Sports Network) - Chad Barrett scored in the 19th minute and the Chicago Fire were lucky to hold on for a 1-0 win over the San Jose Earthquakes in Major League Soccer on Saturday.

San Jose outplayed Chicago for nearly the entire match but had nothing to show for its effort after a pair of late shots hit the crossbar and post and rookie Shea Salinas missed an open net from just steps in front of the goal.

Mexican Cuauhtemoc Blanco, who was otherwise shut down by San Jose's defense, helped set up the early goal for the Fire (2-0-1), who extend their unbeaten streak to three to open the season.

San Jose (0-2-0), which returned to the league this season, dropped its second straight in its home opener - one of three games at McAfee Coliseum this year.

"San Jose gave us a very good fight. We're happy to get the points," Blanco said.

San Jose's Gavin Glinton had the first scoring chance in the eighth minute but after being set up by a pass from Kei Kamara, had his blast stopped by Chicago goalie Jon Busch.

Busch made an even better save in the 18th minute to save a shot from Glinton, diving to push a ball headed toward the upper right corner wide for a corner.

Chicago defended the corner and then went on the attack with Blanco setting up the first goal. Blanco controlled the ball on an attacking run and passed to Tomasz Frankowski near the top of the penalty area.

Frankowski took a shot with his first touch and San Jose goalie Joe Cannon was able to knock it down. But the rebound rolled to the right side of the box and Barrett beat Cannon to the loose ball.

"I was lucky enough to be there to clean it up," said Barrett, who scored his second goal of the season.

Glinton continued to pressure Chicago's defense with another shot in the 21st, but it sailed just wide of the left post.

Frankowski, a former Polish international, broke free for a one-on-one chance against Cannon in the 33rd minute but the Earthquakes goalie got low to make a save and keep the deficit at one goal.

Ned Grabavoy had San Jose's last scoring chance of the first half but his shot went just wide of the left post with two minutes left.

With the temperature reaching 85 degrees on a sunny afternoon, both teams were drained after a fast-paced first half. For the first 40 minutes of the second half, neither side threatened to score.

The Earthquakes had their best chance in the 87th minute when Glinton got free in the box for a header - which he put just wide - but was called for offsides anyway.

"Obviously there was a shield up there in front of their net," Glinton said.

Chicago substitute Calen Carr nearly put the match away in the 89th minute but shot just wide of the left post from a tough angle on one of his team's only chances in the second half.

Four minutes of extra time gave San Jose plenty of time to create more chances but it still failed to score.

Ramiro Corrales hit the crossbar in the 93rd minute, and Kamara put a shot off the right post just seconds later. Kamara's shot bounced right to Salinas, but he shot high from right in front of the net.

San Jose controlled the later stages of the match and finished with 19 shots - including nine on goal - and limited Chicago's chances throughout the match, but couldn't overcome Barrett's early goal.

"I think that for us to come out and play that well on both sides of the ball, we should have gotten something out of the game," San Jose coach Frank Yallop said.

Sane Jose will still be looking for its first win when it travels to Colorado on April 19. Chicago hosts Kansas City on April 20.

04/12 21:58:50 ET