The Chicago Fire got out to a dream start when they caught Real Salt Lake napping on a throw-in. Gonzalo Segares got the ball to Patrick Nyarko who then sent the ball towards the direction of Daniel Paladini and Marco Pappa. Whether or not it was intended for Paladini, his touch on the ball drew in Real Salt Lake's Jamison Olave and two other RSL players honed in on Dominic Oduro. Paladini then passed the ball to an open Pappa who curled the ball with his right foot past a diving Nick Rimando.
The Fire were still celebrating their goal and RSL had just restarted at midfield when Kyle Beckerman passed the ball to the wing. Daniel Paladini came up from behind Beckerman and gave him a push to the back. The normally level-headed RSL captain turned around and immediately headbutted Paladini under his chin. Head referee Baldomero Toledo caught the foul from Beckerman and gave him a straight red card.