Hamilton FC travelled to Chicago to play, top of the table, Chicago Fire in Evanston on Friday night. The game kicked off at 6:30pm in front of a crowd of about 300 enthusiastic and cheering fans. Hamilton took some time to get going in this game and found themselves behind 2-0 at half-time on Chicago goals at the 16th and 19
th minute marks. Both goals the result of some slack defending.
The second half kicked off with a group of Chicago Fire supporters taking position behind the HFC bench, singing and taunting the Hamilton squad. They were quickly subdued, however, when Josh Bennett struck a nice, inside of the foot, strike from close range just two minutes into the second half. Hamilton were buoyed by the early goal and took the play to the Fire, gaining the important midfield advantage. Scott McCoubrey then struck a sweet left footer into the bottom corner past the outstretched Chicago goalkeeper after 55 minutes. The comeback looked to be on as Chicago had lost their composure and were at sixes and sevens at the back. But they were able to recompose themselves and struck what looked to be the winner with about 12 minutes to go. "Eighty-seven minute" Evan James had other ideas though, as he rose high above the Fire defence to head an Anthony Di Biase free kick into the Chicago net, leaving the home team stunned again.
This was a great character builder for HFC as they showed grit and determination having to come back twice to gain the important road point. Hamilton FC next play on Tuesday June 7 at Brian Timmins Stadium. They face visitors FC London for a 6pm kick-off.
* courtesy Neil Brown, Hamilton FC