Home SoccerSt. Louis City St. Louis CITY SC Hits Three Past Chicago Fire FC to Extend Unbeaten Streak to Five Games

St. Louis CITY SC Hits Three Past Chicago Fire FC to Extend Unbeaten Streak to Five Games

by St. Louis City SC

St. Louis CITY SC pushed its unbeaten streak to five consecutive matches with a 3-1 victory over Chicago Fire FC at CITYPARK. Rasmus Alm wasted no time putting CITY SC ahead, scoring 1 minute and 24 seconds into the match for the fastest goal in CITY SC history. Chicago equalized just after halftime, but Klauss responded with a second-half brace to vault CITY SC in front and earn the team’s second straight win at CITYPARK.

Brazilian Connection

Klauss and Pompeu have formed a potent duo over CITY SC’s last three matches. In CITY SC’s come-from-behind road draw against Sporting Kansas City, Klauss set up Pompeu for the midfielder’s strike from distance. Against Chicago Fire FC this time around, it was Pompeu who found Klauss in the box to punch home the game-winning goal.

Postgame Notes

  • Rasmus Alm scored his first goal of the season
  • Alm’s goal was the fastest in CITY SC history, coming just 1 minute and 24 seconds into the match. The goal marked the second time CITY SC scored in the first two minutes this season
  • CITY SC is 15-7-8 all-time in regular-season matches when Alm either starts or enters the match.
  • Klauss scored his team-leading fourth and fifth goals of the season, with all his goals coming in the last seven matches. He has tallied eight goals in the last 18 regular-season matches.
  • Klauss recorded his third brace in a CITY SC jersey.
  • Célio Pompeu, Chris Durkin and Tomáš Ostrák notched their second assists of the season
  • CITY SC extended its unbeaten streak to five straight matches (2-0-3)
  • CITY SC remained undefeated at CITYPARK this year, moving to 3-0-3 at home in MLS play and 4-0-3 at home across all competitions
  • St. Louis is just one of three teams this season that has not lost a match at home. (New York Red Bulls & LAFC)
  • Across CITY SC’s fourteen all-time MLS wins at home, the team has scored three or more goals in ten of those contests
  • After scoring three goals against the Fire, CITY SC recorded their 14th game with at least three goals since the start of the 2023 season, the most in MLS over the span.
  • Following Columbus Crew’s 2-1 loss to FC Cincinnati, CITY SC is the only team in the league with just one loss
  • Since 2023, CITY SC is 13-0-2 when scoring at least three goals across all competitions

Goal-Scoring Plays

STL: Rasmus Alm – Rasmus Alm scored with right footed shot from the central position outside the box.

CHI: Hugo Cuypers (Andrew Gutman) – Hugo Cuypers scored with left footed shot from the center of the box.

STL: Klauss (Célio Pompeu) – João Klauss scored with right footed shot from the center of the box.

STL: Klauss (Chris Durkin, Tomáš Ostrák) – João Klauss scored with header from the center of the box.

May 11, 2024 – CITYPARK (St. Louis, Missouri)

Goals by Half         1     2     F

St. Louis CITY SC      1     2     3

Chicago Fire FC       0     1     1

Scoring Summary

STL: Rasmus Alm, 2

CHI: Hugo Cuypers (Andrew Gutman), 46

STL: Klauss (Célio Pompeu), 56

STL: Klauss (Chris Durkin), 67

Misconduct Summary

CHI: Fabian Herbers (caution), 22

STL: Rasmus Alm (caution), 45+1

CHI: Chicago Fire FC bench (caution), 59

CHI: Xherdan Shaqiri (caution), 61

CHI: Carlos Terán (caution), 90+1

Lineups

STL: GK Roman Bürki ©; D Tomas Totland, D Tim Parker, D Kyle Hiebert, D Anthony Markanich (Joakim Nilsson 80’); M Chris Durkin, M Tomáš Ostrák (Hosei Kijima 88’), M Ramus Alm (Sam Adeniran 73’), M Indiana Vassilev, M Célio Pompeu (Aziel Jackson 80’); F Klauss (Nökkvi Thórisson 80’)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Ben Lundt, M Akil Watts, D Nikolas Dyhr, M Njabulo Blom

TOTAL SHOTS: 24; SHOTS ON GOAL: 7; FOULS: 9; OFFSIDES: 4; CORNER KICKS: 5; SAVES: 3

CHI: GK Chris Brady; D Carlos Terán, D Andrew Gutman, D Mauricio Pineda (Rafael Czichos 72’), D Allan Arigoni (Arnaud Souquet 62’); M Chris Mueller (Tom Barlow 73’), M Xherdan Shaqiri ©, M Brian Gutierrez, M Fabian Herbers (Frederico Navarro 46’), M Kellyn Acosta (Jonathan Dean 82’); F Hugo Cuypers

Substitutes Not Used: D Wyatt Omsberg, GK Spencer Richey, F Georgios Koutsias, F Omari Glasgow

TOTAL SHOTS: 13; SHOTS ON GOAL: 4; FOULS: 12; OFFSIDES: 0; CORNER KICKS: 3; SAVES: 4

Referee: Pierre-Luc Lauziere

Assistant Referees: Jose Da Silva, Jeffrey Greeson

Fourth Official: Nabil Bensalah

VAR: Chris Penso

AVAR: Tom Supple

Venue: CITYPARK

Weather: Clear, 72 degrees

ST. LOUIS CITY SC POSTGAME QUOTES

Audio: Recordings

Video: Footage (Password: LZDQ0&Qv)

Head Coach Bradley Carnell

Opening statement:

Great to be back at CITYPARK. I think there’s a certain buzz and an energy in this stadium and a certain enjoyment and how we like to play. Yeah, I thought it was a very controlled performance, bar the goal we conceded just after halftime.

But very happy with the way that we continued to apply the principles, to apply the game plan and very happy to have a response when we go concede the equalizer.

So, credit to the boys. Very happy about this, a very important three points, and this hopefully kicks off for a good stretch here at CITYPARK over the next couple of weeks.

One win, two draws, what made you put that out against Chicago?

It’s a great question, if you had three hours, we would explain so many different formational changes throughout the game. Up high, it’s 4-2-3-1. When we are defending, it’s 4-2-2-2. We like to call it when we’re attacking, it’s a 4-3-2-1. I promise you, we can go on for days. What you see and what you read is not always what we put out as coaches.

So it’s a great question. It’s a little bit more complex but I appreciate that.

We looked at the game plan. We looked at the opponent. We came up with our game plan, and I thought we executed it really well.

Rasmus’s goal to start things off, a good way to get back, and a good way after struggling to score goals in the previous game?

Yeah, I think they tie are first or tie second for shots conceded outside the box. They were going into this game six. So we told the boys, be brave. It’s a back line that drops off. Shoot from the very get-go, crosses, and I think you could see that intent the whole night, to shoot and get balls in the box. Part of the game plan was chaos in the box, and I think we created that and we shot from outside, which we got rewarded for.

Rasmus has not taken many shots this season. So it’s a message that got through apparently.

Glad he took on the game plan.

And Klauss, you give up that goal, it becomes a tie game and you had had a lot of chances then to score in the first half that you couldn’t get in but then retaking control of the game there.

Yeah, just shows that there’s a lot of resolve in this group of ours. Last year, these things would have ended 4-0, 5-0 maybe, just the way we would have taken those chances and utilized them.

I feel like last season, right, it had that same type of edge and the same type of buzz; that we don’t take the chances, 1-0 score line is always tight. And if you fall asleep in the MLS, you can get punished, right, especially with guys like Shaqiri on the field who are really big game changers.

We came out of the locker room a little bit slow and we get punished for it. But great resolve from the guys. And it’s not a rally at the 90th minute, but a rally from 47 minutes. Again, that we get on top of it; take a stranglehold in the game. I’m really proud of the guys.

Klauss, he started the season slow. I think in the past few weeks, a turning point for his season in a good way. How important is it for Klauss to play like today? Obviously to expect two goals in every game is insane, but to be active and active with the players around him?

The cherry on top is the two goals. Klauss plays the way Klauss plays. Just because he’s doesn’t score goals doesn’t mean he’s not playing well. I think there’s a clear distinction. Unfortunately, we see the two games on the post-game results, and you see his name twice. Then all of a sudden, he played well.

I slightly think differently. We see Klauss day-in and day-out and the way he trains and the way he puts in effort and the way he applies the game plan.

Good from him and the cherry on top is getting rewarded for all the hard work. I’m glad it’s starting to fall his way a little bit. He’s due a couple of goals, and I’m glad he’s starting to take those.

This is a much-needed win for the team. How quickly do you reset because you’ve got a big MLS Cup on Wednesday night at home.

Yeah, I wish we could play tomorrow. I feel really great. The guys came out of it really well. I think the boys managed the game and the intensity levels of it and the more intense we are, the less we need to run, and we’ve proven that over time.

So the game was played in one-half in my opinion, so the guys, we should recover well, and hopefully this is a good game for us to get over and then we can prepare nicely now for LAFC in a really good and healthy way.

Speaking of Klauss, he scores that first goal — seemed like one of those games —

Yeah, good. I mean, we knew we can get him out in 1v1 moments in isolation. We know he’s very dangerous when he cuts in and he can go for goal himself or he can slip little passes through. He’s very creative. Yeah, we enjoy Célio’s contribution.

But I thought Rasmus on the one side, a little bit more vertical, a little bit more direct and Célio on the other side.

So we have different tools to unsettle different opponents, and even in the same game, two different mechanisms to combat, and if we need to change and orientate something over the left or something over to the right in different ways.

I think we are a little bit more unpredictable than last year, and I think you can see that with our final third sort of attacking play.

Rasmus scoring that goal so early on, is there any sort of change in philosophy or game plan when you get that early advantage?

No. I told the guys, it’s 0-0. The minute we scored it, I said the clock restarts now.

So I never want us to be complacent and passive. Sometimes those are of the worst things that can happen because you fall into a sense of sort of, yeah, a comfort zone, you know, is a word that I would use. I try to keep the edge from the very beginning. Because to go up a goal early is very difficult to manage, especially when over the last stretch that we’ve had, it’s very easy to fall negative, fall passive and drop off.

So for me, it was very important to stick to the game plan and be on the front foot and be brave, and I think you could see that with the amount of chances we created especially in the first half. And then I thought we controlled the game very well in the second half.

A little bit of a switch with attacking in the second half. Was there anything — going into that decision?

You talking personnel or are you talking shape?

Just the attacking — towards — for the second half —

No, I think, you know, through the chances created in the first half, it’s more of the same for the second half. I think we had to step up the urgency levels a little bit because we were really frustrated that we conceded so early in the second half. That was not in the game plan.

We take our clean sheets with a lot of pride around here, so we are all disappointed around that. But again, great resiliency and great urgency to play to the north — to the north side, and we end games pretty well going that direction.

Again, whether it’s first half, second half, it’s always a joy playing that end.

You already talked about the three primary formations you play and the different phases. One of the big things I noticed was the versatility was Durkin gives you. He’s playing center back in the back 3-1 phase, and he’s pushing high up and causing chaos. Can you talk about how much his versatility unlocks you in all phases?

Yeah, it’s versatility. It’s flexibility. You can drop him between the two center-backs. He can be tight in the pocket with catch and play moves with Tomáš Ostrák and then, you know, I sort of have to close my eyes and clench my fists a little bit when he starts on his forays upfield because I’m looking at the holes where he’s leaving in the midfield.

So sometimes it’s a little bit of shape and structure that we need to have; that when he goes, we have to shore up the house there just in front of the two center-backs. But again he has the urgency and the energy, and through his mentality, he just puts us in another gear which is really good for us.

Does he have more leeway in 1-0 than 0-0?

No. Listen, he’s been managing yellow card for three games now I think it is. He’s been managing positional discipline, as well. Because we see a lot of the things that we are trying to help him along and urge him along, and we know how comfortable Tomas is in the buildup phases as well. You know, he’s almost like the destroyer but almost, you know, when they jump on Tomas, then he becomes the open guy.

Again we are pushing him along in all phases and he’s showing great responses. Yeah, I think he’s a good fit for us. He’s got good mentality.

How did the turf hold up?

Yeah, I mean, we trained on it on Thursday. It just takes time to get a feel of it, right, when you travel away from home, you need to get the feel of it in the first couple minutes.

Luckily we had a chance on Thursday to get a good feel of it, and today it was playing a little bit quicker. At least that was a thing, right. Still a bit of bounce we have to deal with. Wasn’t as lively as it usually is, these types of fields but I thought the boys managed it pretty well. We need a slick field. We need a quick, fast field. That’s the way we want to play and that’s the way you apply the business over here.

Again we have a game under our belt and it’s only going to get better from here.

Do you have any word on [Eduard] Löwen’s availability going forward?

Yeah, it’s a really good question. You ask the good questions. So, Edu will probably make a statement next week. He wants to publicly come and address you guys and when he addresses you guys, that will be the time that he’s available.

João Klauss

On the rivalry between St. Louis and Chicago:

Yeah, we don’t think about these things during the game. For any opponent, we just always try to do our job and try to play the way we want to play the game. And yeah, if our fans are happy, we are happy. And we have to say thank you to them because they pushed us so hard today during the 90 minutes.

On the team’s missed chances in the first half:

Yeah, it would be better, but I don’t think so. I think by halftime everybody was in a good mood. Everybody was excited, I think we played a great first half. I agree with you, and we could score maybe two or three goals in the first half. But yeah, we didn’t, we didn’t change in the second half, even when we conceded very early. So yeah, proud of the boys today.

On Celio’s assist to him:

It was great. I think Celio did everything. I just put the ball in. But it was a great play from him. Yeah, I have been telling him for two or three weeks how I gave him the assist versus Kansas City and that it was now his turn to assist me.

Rasmus Alm

On how it felt to score 84 seconds after the opening whistle:

It’s good, then you get more confidence, and I think the game plan we have worked really well. And yeah, I’m so happy that we got the three points today.

On starting a run of three games in eight days and getting a win tonight:

It’s huge, but I mean, now we have a new game in what is it three, four days? Everybody plays to play games, and to have a lot of games, it’s just, for me, it’s just fun. Of course, it’s more about the recovery between the games, but I mean, that’s why we play the game.

On having success out wide on the attack:

I think it was the game plan that worked out today. And their backline is dropping a lot, so that creates space for us, and I feel like we did a game exactly the game plan that we want to do. And it worked out, so I’m happy with that.

Célio Pompeu

On how the win tonight felt:

It’s very good, you know. Like, the game before Houston, we scored goals, three goals, and then we tied again. And then we go to Houston, don’t play our best game. tie again. So, it’s very good to grab this win, these three points at home is always different. We feel the energy from the fans, so it’s just it’s very good

On his assist to Klauss:

Yeah, I took one-v-one, you know, the thing that I like, I’m wide on the left. So, I just did my thing, dribble, and then I cut it. And then I see that we were practicing a lot of entry in the box, so I knew some players would be there. And then I saw Klauss, and then thanks to him and his good finish, he put the ball in the back of the net. So, it was very good. And yeah, good for him too. He got two good goals, good ‘number nine’ goals. So, I’m very happy for him.

On Alm’s goal in the second minute of the match:

We’re all so happy for Rasmus. As you know, he’s a guy who works very hard, works for the team. He never complains. He’s always working. He’s not a guy who talks a lot, but he talks with the ball when he plays. He talks playing — that’s how he communicates. So, very happy for him. He deserves this goal, you know, so, yeah, just proud of him. He’s been working a lot. He got like assists before but then he got his first goal of the year. So yeah, yes, happy for him and hope he keeps going.

Chris Durkin

On his goal assist:

You know, it feels great. You know, we’ve been preaching service into the box and runs. Klauss comes on to the second post and, you know, nails in a great header. So, you know, extremely happy to help out in whatever way possible. You know, really happy with the form that Klauss is coming on to. Really respect, you know, everything he is as a player, so really happy for him.

On being more involved offensively tonight:

This was definitely more of an active game. I thought a little bit more offensively. You know, I know that coaches are always trying to reel me in a little bit at times. But I mean, it was awesome. Just to get the assist today with Klauss. So yeah, I love being all over the field. That’s part of my DNA is just working hard and being everywhere I can. So, I love the role on this team and probably should have reeled it in a little bit towards the end of the game, but that’s just kind of who I am.

On if there are moments during games where he recognizes he should attack less:

Yeah, I think especially when we’re winning three to one, it’s time to settle down a bit. And, you know, I had some guys yelling at me just to kind of hold and stay a little and, you know, they were right. I had to. I felt like, you know, we had a lot of momentum at the end and there was a lot of space to press on, but it’s just about tactical discipline at that time and just kill the game with the ball. And you know, they were hitting a lot of long balls at that time. So, it’s just about being smart. And I got a lot of guys around me that keep me honest. Especially Tim [Parker] and those guys with loud voices. So, they help out a lot, just keep me right.

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