Bridgeview, IL – Maicon Santos scored twice in the final seven minutes of play to help give the Chicago Fire their first win of the season with a 3-1 defeat of Red Bull New York at Toyota Park on Sunday.
Jamison Olave had given the Red Bulls the lead in the 17th minute, but the Fire answered just before halftime with Daniel Paladini equalizing.
The two sides traded scoring opportunities in the second period, but it was the home side that emerged victorious as Santos struck late to produce his first goals in the red kit of Chicago.
The result sees Chicago (1-3-1) improve to four points to go level with D.C. United and the New England Revolution. The Fire remain bottom of the Eastern Conference through goal differential.
New York (1-3-2) remains in search of its first road win of the season. The Red Bulls sit level with Toronto FC on five points.
Chicago's slow start was exacerbated by New York grabbing the opening goal. A Red Bulls corner kick was not properly dealt with by the Fire defense, and Olave made the home side pay by firing home his second goal of the season with an overhead kick.
It looked as though it would not be Chicago's day following a missed penalty kick from Chris Rolfe in the 25th minute, but the Fire managed to put that disappointment behind them when Hunter Jumper's cross in the 44th minute was headed home by Paladini.
The Red Bulls came within inches of restoring their lead when Thierry Henry rattled the post with a curling left-footed strike from outside the penalty area in the 69th minute, but it was the home side that managed to break the deadlock.
Santos, who came on in the 63rd minute to replace Sherjill MacDonald, latched on to Paladini's through ball seven minutes from time, cut inside the box to wriggle free of Olave with ease and calmly slotted a shot past Luis Robles.
The former D.C. United striker completed his brace in the 89th minute, getting on the end of a header from Jeff Larentowicz and poking his shot just inside the far post.