for this game

Blanco lifts Fire over Real Salt Lake

Aug 19, 2007 - 4:27 AM SALT LAKE CITY (Ticker) -- Cuauhtemoc Blanco had a goal and an assist to lead the Chicago Fire to a 2-0 victory over Real Salt Lake on Saturday.

Blanco started the scoring late in the first half, taking a pass from Ivan Guerrero and blasting a left-foot shot from 20 yards out to the far upper corner past Salt Lake goalkeeper Nick Rimando in the 43rd minute.

"I think (Blanco) did great out there," Chicago coach Juan Carlos Osorio said. "Just receiving the ball, playing through balls and getting us going. ... Beautiful goal. I'm very pleased to have him on board."

It was Blanco's first goal in just his third career MLS game.

"At the moment, he's playing like a great player," Osorio said. "His contributions are not selfish contributions. He is more like a playmaker, and we play through him and he makes our forwards play."

The Fire (6-8-5) extended their advantage to 2-0 in the 78th minute, when Blanco's corner kick was headed in by Paulo Wanchope, who also recorded his first tally of the season.

Chicago goalkeeper Matt Pickens made five saves en route to his seventh shutout this season and eighth career. Pickens preserved the clean sheet in the 88th minute by denying reserve forward Atiba Harris' shot.

"It's not just me," Pickens said. "It's a reflection of the whole team, starting with the forwards all the way back to the back three. I've got a lot of help. They're there for me all the time."

Salt Lake (2-10-6), which remains at the bottom of the Western Conference standings, suffered its fifth loss in six contests despite outshooting Chicago, 16-10.

"We came out trying to get a streak going, because we've been playing well," Rimando said. "I thought we played all right tonight. We definitely came out and fought. I think we were maybe too aggressive, we wanted to force that final pass. The ball didn't bounce our way tonight."








  • MLS UPDATE
    CHICAGO 2
    REAL SALT LAKE 0 FINAL

    GOAL SCORING:
    CHICAGO - Cuauhtemoc Blanco in the 43rd minute
    - Paulo Wanchope in the 78th minute
    REAL SALT LAKE - NONE

    CAUTIONS:
    CHICAGO - Bakary Soumare in the 45th minute
    - Chris Armas in the 59th minute
    REAL SALT LAKE - Nathan Sturgis in the 15th minute
    - Kyle Beckerman in the 30

    Aug 18 11:16 PM


  • MLS CORRECTION
    CHICAGO 2
    REAL SALT LAKE 0
    CHICAGO CAUTION: Bakary Soumare in the 45th minute

    Aug 18 11:13 PM


  • MLS
    CHICAGO 2
    REAL SALT LAKE 0 FINAL

    Aug 18 11:01 PM


  • MLS UPDATE
    CHICAGO 2
    REAL SALT LAKE 0
    CHICAGO GOAL: Paulo Wanchope in the 78th minute

    Fire vs. Real Salt LakeAug 18 10:43 PM


  • MLS UPDATE
    CHICAGO 1
    REAL SALT LAKE 0
    CHICAGO CAUTION: Ivan Guerrero in the 45th minute

    Aug 18 9:54 PM


  • MLS UPDATE
    CHICAGO 1
    REAL SALT LAKE 0
    CHICAGO GOAL: Cuauhtemoc Blanco in the 43rd minute

    Fire vs. Real Salt LakeAug 18 9:52 PM