Man United rally to quench Fire 3-1

24 July 2011 01:30

Three second-half goals lifted English Premier League champions Manchester United to a 3-1 friendly football victory over Major League Soccer's Chicago Fire.

Wayne Rooney's goal in the 66th minute got the English giants on level terms in the match played before a crowd of 61,308 at Soldier Field, home of the NFL's Chicago Bears.

Rafael Da Silva scored the go-ahead goal and in the 76th, dribbling through the defence and using his left foot to slot the ball through the legs of Chicago's backup keeper Jon Conway.

Nani added another goal in the 82nd to seal the victory.

David de Gea, the 20-year-old keeper who inked a five-year contract with Manchester United in June shortly after helping Spain earn the European under-21 title, gave up an early goal but recovered with a series of solid saves in his first appearance for his new club.

De Gea, who is expected to be the successor to Edwin van der Sar as United's number one following the veteran Dutchman's retirement last month, delivered an impressive diving stop of Patrick Nyarko's close-range shot shortly before halftime.

With Chicago in the grip of the heat wave oppressing much of the United States, United manager Alex Ferguson went with a young starting lineup.

The Fire exploited some sometimes shaky defense to score in the 13th minute, when a long free kick by Marco Pappa was headed into the back of the net by Fire defender Cory Gibbs.

The Fire, who are languishing near the bottom of MLS's Eastern Conference standings, were able to hold onto the ball for long stretches in the first half as the lead held up until the break.

United, whose previous North American tour matches ended in a 4-1 victory over New England and a 7-0 drubbing of Seattle, brought in the big guns in the second half as Ferguson brought in Rooney, Ryan Giggs, Park Ji-Sung and Rio Ferdinand.

Rooney got their scoring going when he eluded Fire defender Josip Mikulic and lofted the ball over Conway to equalise.

Source: AFP