Winning - Fire 1 Toronto FC 0

The Fire defeated Toronto FC 1-0 in the first match of the Carolina Challenge Cup.  Chicago controlled the play for the most part during the first thirty minutes before an uncharacteristic Logan Pause red card forced the team to play a man down for the remainder of the match. 

Carlos De Los Cobos started the game in the 3-5-2 formation that he seems to be favoring going into First Kick 2011.  Jalil Anibaba, Josip Mikulic, and Cory Gibbs started along the backline with Bratislav Ristic, Baggio Husidic, Pause, Marco Pappa, and Davis Paul in midfield.  Diego Chaves and Gaston Puerari started play at the forward spots.

The winning goal was set up by draft pick Davis Paul as he able to locate Marco Pappa in front of the net for a tap in.  Gonzalo Segares, Corben Bone, Patrick Nyarko, Marko Maric, Mike Videira, and Gabriel Ferrari also saw action for the Fire. 

The starters looked fairly good against a Toronto side playing without Dwayne DeRosario and Julian DeGuzman.  The Fire's next match is Wednesday at 4pm against DC United. 

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  • Ristic showed a good deal of versatility in dropping back on defense after Pause was carded. I also thought Gibbs and Paul were solid in their given positions. Good to see Paul deliver an assist on the goal. Johnson seemed a bit off, but I wonder if it was a lack of sharpness from not seeing many good chances come at him, especially in the first half.

  • In reply to DFBJeff:

    ristic has 2 very good assets in his game - versatility and work rate.

    glad the fire decided to sign him last season after a half seasons worth of being on trial LOL

  • In reply to DFBJeff:

    I agree with Short Passes. The Fire clearly needs a new approach to communicating with the fans and with the media in general. How hard is it to spread news about the Fire? Also, regarding the style of play, I thought I saw somewhere that there was a push from MLS to have teams employ a more technical attacking style. Maybe what you saw in Chattanooga was a result of that push? I like the fact that the Fire will be a much younger team this year. I just feel that buying older guys who made names for themselves in Europe/Mexico to come to MLS for a year or two to draw temporary fans does not build the league in the long run. Building a foundation of younger players is a risk because those players could be snatched away e.g Chris Rolfe, Bocanegra, but if the league wants long term fans, the League has to take that chance. Is there going to be a SuperLiga this year? That is another example of how MLS tries to build interest in soccer by creating a nice second tier tournament between the Mexican Primera Division teams and MLS teams, but fails to even explain to the broader public on its own website that it even exists. How can you bulod fan interest in something if you don't even talk about it. When Garber was interviewed last week he mentioned in an off hand way that there might not be a SuperLiga tournament this year. This is classic MLS. I am reminded on the Moivie Cool Hand Luke: "What we have here is a failure to communicate."

  • In reply to SoccerNewbie:

    If you check MLS.com over the last several months it is clear the Fire are dead last in terms of articles and news reports. The Fire have many names on its site who are supposedly working in the public relations field, it's hard to see what it is they actually do. The entire organizations seems bush league. its own club page is also rather pathetic, way below the standards of the rest of the league, who seem to makes news on a daily basis rather than a few times a month.

  • In reply to Celt:

    The website design is restricted by the league templates and there is a 2.0 upgrade apparently in the works. As far as news updates, just keep reading Fire Confidential ;)

  • In reply to cesba:

    GR, yours is the only site worth reading. Big Soccer fire section has little news and less debate. Seems more like a private club which is self-referential, in jokes etc. this was not always the case but there is very little news or analysis on the Fire boards. Ives is decent despite animus against him for reasons I cannot fathom. Bring on the season already.

  • In reply to Celt:

    celt -- totally agree regarding GR and this site. His attention to getting the facts is great plus he never seems to let his ego get in the way. Several of the other sites (SBI, Soccer America, and Major League Soccer Talk) seem to launch articles just to get a reaction or else they use rookie bloggers who attempt to analyze topics way beyond their depth, hoping nobody will notice!! I may have disagreed with GR once or twice but I don't have problems with his facts. If he does misstep, he's the first to correct it. Keep up the great work GR!!!

  • In reply to shortpasses:

    Once or twice?!?....How dare you. ;)

  • In reply to DFBJeff:

    The Don will be in the house at the Season Kick Off Luncheon....

    http://www.chicago-fire.com/news/2011/03/don-garber-speak-kickoff-luncheon

  • In reply to cesba:

    Is it open to the public? I would like to know from Don Garber if they will ever get their own network like NBA,MLB,NHL and NFL. Second, have MLS carry games on Sirius/XM for a marketing standpoint. Lastly, once the league goes to 20 teams, I want to see the teams wear NASL and MLS retro uniforms for a month. Since he worked for the NFL, the league in 1994 celebrated the 75th anniversary and they wore retro uniforms.

  • In reply to longoria3:

    Tickets to the Luncheon are $75 a seat with proceeds benefitting the Chicago Fire Foundation.

  • In reply to DFBJeff:

    Hopefully at The Chicago-Fire Kick Off Luncheon Don Garber can
    mentor Julian Posada and his Staff on how to properly market the
    Fire to the News Media and help them in securing a Jersey Sponsor.
    The Fire Front Office really need his help and direction in this
    important matter.

  • In reply to DFBJeff:

    hey GR,

    Any word on the game against UNC-Greensboro?

  • In reply to DDT5583:

    Fire won 1-0 on a goal by Puerari and there was apparently some sort of scuffle on the field after a hard tackle on Anibaba. Nyarko assisted on the goal.

    Line Up : Dufty; Anibaba, Videira, Muniz; Yoximar, Pantazopoulos, Bone, Paladini, Segares; Puerari, Ferrari

    Second Half : Dufty; Yoximar, Watson-Siriboe, Robinson, Muniz; Nyarko, Rivas, Pantazapoulos, Paladini; Barouch, Ferrari

  • Full match report......

    http://www.chicago-fire.com/news/2011/03/fire-top-tfc-1-0-first-ccc-match

  • Great live chat earlier, GR. Did anyone put together highlights of today's match that you know about? I'd love to watch 'em.

  • The Fire's win actually made the Tribune's Breaking Sports section!

  • In reply to JeannieH:

    Jeannie, it is about winning!!!

  • In reply to JeannieH:

    Will Pause be suspended for the game against United?

  • In reply to JeannieH:

    I would think so, unless there's some crazy CCC tournament rule that allows him to play Wednesday.

  • In reply to JeannieH:

    From Jeff Crandall on Twitter a few mins. ago:

    "To clarify, Logan Pause will be eligible to play for the Fire on Wednesday despite receiving a red card tonight."

    Sounds like a function of it being during preseason.

  • In reply to DFBJeff:

    Well don't waste the opportunity to get a red card in every match played in Blackbaud. They don't count!!

  • In reply to DFBJeff:

    Quotes from DLC.....

    http://www.chicago-fire.com/news/2011/03/cdlc-happy-result

  • In reply to DFBJeff:

    i'm just hoping the match vs DC Utd we can see a full game of the 3-5-2 formation - no more red cards in pre-season!

  • In reply to DFBJeff:

    GR -- two points to make: one, howm dare you imply in your previous post that Tiger and I are on Frank's case!!LOL We are merely trying to administer some tough love. Seriously I have been happy at the people that he has brought in; I like the idea that they have identified certain target countries for their recruiting; and I like the new formation --just hope DLC doesn't play needless shuffling games with it; what I haven't liked are his dithering about the announcements and the baloney excuses that they have used in explaining the delays. They need someone with better public relations savvy.

  • In reply to DFBJeff:

    GR -- TWO, I had the chance to watch a preseason match in person between the Revs and the Crew in Chattanooga. The Crew lost but they look really good. Dilly Duka will be fantastic. Also, the style of both teams was really inspiring--lots of creativity, great passing and excellent skillful defensive play. I was impressed and I'm not a fan of ewither team. Hope this style wasn't and aberration for MLS as a whole!!

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