The Fire fell 2-1 to Mexican club Tigres UANL on Saturday night, but despite the result the Fire was able to advance to the semifinals of SuperLiga.
The Fire barely scratched through to the semis, getting through on a Cuauhtemoc Blanco 84th minute penalty kick conversion.
The Fire really didn't play too well throughout the match and their displeasure was pretty clear in the locker room after the match.
Here are some thoughts I had on the Fire's defeat:
1 - The Fire's intensity...after going behind
Although it took awhile for the Fire to get going, I thought that their effort and intensity really picked up after they fell behind by two. They were able to throw numbers into the attack and after the 61st minute it always seemed likely that they would get a goal back.
This good effort to close the game is still no excuse for the lackluster one the Fire began with, but still sometimes you have to take what you can get from the game...
2 - Not much else...
Not too much needs to be said here. The Fire just really didn't play a very good game tonight.
**Didn't like it:**
1 - The Fire's lack of intensity...before going behind
The Fire did not start the game out with the right mentality. And it showed. They looked incredibly disorganized in defense and almost gave up a few early goals.
"I told the guys in the locker room that if we have this type of attitude then were not going to win anything," said Head Coach Denis Hamlett. "When you step on the field you got to make sure that you're ready to go from the get go and we didn't do that tonight."
2 - The disorganization in the defense
Organization in the back has been one of the hallmarks of the Fire's success so far this season. That certainly wasn't the case Saturday night.
"We backed out of tackles," said Hamlett. "On both goals we had enough guys back to make a play and we didn't."
Having enough guys back and not making a play was painfully true on Tigres's second
goal. Midfielder Armando Pulido was able to split defenders Tim Ward and Austin Washington on the play. It seemed like neither player wanted to get stuck in and make a tackle and that cost the Fire.
Look for more post game reaction (and player evaluations) later on.