The last time Chicago saw Seattle was the 2011 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup Final, and it was not a night to remember for Fire supporters. Although Chicago was on the upswing making a last ditch run for MLS playoffs, the team that faced off against Seattle in the US Open Cup final, it could be argued, reverted to playing as the Carlos de los Cobos’s Fire and not the Frank Klopas’s Fire. In that final, Chicago played spastically, failing to maintain possession by frustratingly playing head-tennis rather than orchestrating any kind of attack. Continue reading
Category Archives: Match Previews
Somehow MLS schedulers have seen fit to fail to give Houston and Chicago any matches for the first month of the season. Well, not any…both teams have played three. While apologists for MLS quirks in this realm will cite working out the kinks of the new uneven schedule or the even lamer explanation, traveling distance, there really is no excuse for both of these teams in devoted markets to have this few matches played. Back-to-back bye weeks are utterly ridiculous. No matter the grumblings, there’s nothing to be done about it but look forward to match number four.
Houston come into Chicago on Sunday having won two and lost one, the memory of that loss has probably faded over the last two weeks so there’s little hope that that result will be weighing on the minds of Dynamo players. Continue reading
Following its season opening 1-1 draw against the Montreal Impact last weekend, the Chicago Fire are set for opening night at Toyota Park on Saturday night (7:30 kick-off) when they take on the Philadelphia Union. The Men in Red are in search of its first win of the season against a Philadelphia side also in search of its first points of the new campaign. The Union fell to Portland during First Kick and then saw its home opener spoiled by Colorado last weekend, leaving them in seventh place in the Eastern Conference table and one of six teams in the East yet to record a win. Meanwhile, the Fire are in third after just one match played.
There’s a good chance of that changing this weekend. Despite being outplayed for much of last weekend’s draw, the Fire appear to have the advantage against the Union following its early struggles on the pitch this season and should be able to walk away from Saturday’s match with three points in the bag.
Here’s three things to watch for against the Union: Continue reading
Ten years is a long wait for any cup, even if it is the Brimstone Cup. If all goes to plan for the Chicago Fire tonight, the men in red will capture their first Brimstone Cup since 2001 with a win over FC Dallas while keeping their playoff hopes alive. The Fire currently sit in seventh place in the MLS standings, just one point behind D.C. United with a game in hand and five points behind Houston and New York. The Fire will be well aware of the stakes tonight and will be hoping to move up the table with a valuable and much needed three points.
Fire starting XI:
Johnson, Gargan, Anibaba, Gibbs, Segares, Pause, Pardo, Grazzini, Nyarko, Chaves, Oduro
FC Dallas starting XI: Hartman, Loyd, Ihemelu, John, Benitez, Castillo, Cruz, Jacobson, Villar, Chavez, Jackson
Big matches make big players. And there may be no bigger stage for a Chicago Fire player this season than the US Open Cup Final to step up and make themselves a hero. Frank Klopas wrote his name into Chicago Fire folklore in 1998 with his extra-time match winning goal in the Fire’s inaugural season (and now has the chance to bring more glory to his name and the club as a coach) while Damani Ralph capped off a memorable season in 2003 with the only goal of the game in the final against the MetroStars. Now, eight years on from that final, and five years after Chicago’s most recent cup triumph, the stage is set for another Fire player to step up and help the team achieve its ultimate goal this season. Continue reading