Fire vs. TFC: Player Evaluations

The Chicago Fire defeated Toronto FC 2-0 yesterday afternoon, and now I'm going to look a little bit more in depth at every Fire player that saw some playing time.  This is a feature that I hope to integrate pretty often into the blog, to give you guys more of an opportunity to discuss the previous match and to share your player evaluations.

By the way, the scale is from 1-10, with 10 being the best rating a player can get.

Here we go...

GK - Jon Busch - 8
Busch played a very solid game in the net.  He organized the defense solidly, snared crosses out of the air and stopped numerous TFC shots.  Busch even provided a little nastiness when he got all up in Amado Guevara's face.

DEF - Tim Ward - 8
Ward got up the field nicely, and he provided a solid defensive effort against TFC as well, contributing to the Fire holding the clean sheet.

DEF - Bakary Soumare - 7
Soumare played a very solid match, teaming up with fellow center back Wilman Conde to shut down Chad Barrett and Toronto's attack.  

DEF - Wilman Conde - 8
I thought Conde played great against TFC.  Not only was he a defensive rock, but he also provided an aerial threat on set pieces, getting on the end of several crosses throughout the match.

DEF - Brandon Prideaux - 8
Prideaux, filling in for the injured Gonzalo Segares, played a great game.  Prideaux was able to integrate himself into the attack very well against TFC and he limited the contribution of Dwayne De Rosario, arguably Toronto's best attacker.

MID - Logan Pause - 6
Pause played his typical role of relatively-anonymous holding midfielder well on Saturday contributing to the Fire holding the shutout.  I would have liked to see a little more distribution from him though.

MID - John Thorrington - 6
Thorrington wasn't really heard from (as far as an attacking standpoint) on Saturday.  He did play well defensively however and did no harm on offense, despite his more limited role.

MID - Marco Pappa - 7
Pappa was effective in the attack before being subbed out for Mike Banner in the 62nd minute.  He provided good service off of free kicks and some creativity in Toronto's half.

MID - Cuauhtemoc Blanco - 7
Blanco played a solid match, distributing well and making a great pass in the lead up to Chris Rolfe's goal.  But the real news here is his running down of a Brian McBride long ball in stoppage time of the second half.  Who knew the old man had those legs?!?  

FWD - Brian McBride - 7
McBride got back to his goal scoring ways on Saturday, he now has 6 tallies on the season.

FWD - Patrick Nyarko - 3
Before he got subbed out at half time, Nyarko was having a rough time on the field.  I expect him to start on the bench next week.

Substitutes:

MID - Chris Rolfe - 8
In his one half of action, Rolfe gave Denis Hamlett plenty of reasons to play him.  He skillfully dribbled TFC goalie Stefan Frei to score the opener, and his shot lead to Brian McBride's goal.

MID - Mike Banner - 7
Banner did a nice jobe getting up and down the field, defending nicely and getting an assist on the Fire's second goal in just 30 minutes of playing time.

DEF - Dasan Robinson - N/A
Came in the 89th minute.  

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