Graham Zusi, back from the United States' World Cup campaign, came on as a sub and injected energy into the match but couldn't help break the deadlock.Dom Dwyer scored a first-half opener, but Mike Magee was on target seven minutes later as Sporting Kansas City and the Chicago Fire drew 1-1 Sunday in MLS league play.
The action started quickly, with Mike Magee jumping on a poor giveaway in the second minute by Kevin Ellis, playing in central defense for Sporting, but the Fire forward couldn't get around Aurelian Collin who cleared the ball from danger.
Dom Dwyer nearly had a highlight-reel goal in the 22nd minute, popping the ball up to himself and trying to scissor-kick it on the half-volley, but Sean Johnson was there to make the save.
Magee troubled the Kansas City back line again just after the half-hour mark, getting onto a long ball from Chris Ritter and firing in a shot from the right of goalkeeper Eric Kronberg, but the ball bounced off Kronberg's far post and was cleared.
Dwyer was on the board with a less audacious effort but a more hardworking finish. He stripped the ball from Patrick Ianni, darted past the center back and slotted his shot past Johnson. Dwyer celebrated the opener by grabbing a phone from a cameraman and taking a selfie with cheering fans in the background. He was booked for the stunt.
A third opportunity presented itself for Magee, and ths time last year's top MLS goalscorer was able to finish. Alex dispossessed Seth Sinovic and was able to find the forward who fired past Kronberg and celebrated in a far more understated fashion.
World Cup participant Graham Zusi came on with 30 minutes to go for the home side and his impact was felt with two corners won in short succession. The United States international put in both corners but neither was finished - though Dwyer had another audacious attempt at the second.
Sporting nearly broke the deadlock in stoppage time, but a double save from Johnson - first on Jacob Peterson and then on CJ Sapong - left the teams to share a point.
Sporting returns to play Saturday against Montreal on July 12 while the Fire travel to face the Atlanta Silverbacks in U.S. Open Cup play midweek before meeting the New England Revolution on Saturday.