Fire v Revs - home opener matchday

While trying to erase the memory of a 4-0 loss last weekend the Fire will open the home portion of the 2013 season against long time nemesis New England Revolution. They will have to do so without Arne Friedrich and Logan Pause again in this game as both players are still recovering from preseason injuries.

New England does not present anywhere near the offensive threat that Los Angeles did but Honduran forward Jerry Bengston should provide a challenge for Steven Kinney and Austin Berry if Frank Klopas chooses to keep the central midfield intact from opening day. The Revolution were the only MLS club idle last weekend so their first eleven isn't set in stone. Jay Heaps has options in midfield but none particularly stand out above the others.  Lee Nguyen is sure to start on the left but an injury to holding midfielder Kalifa Cisse could keep him on the bench for this match. Cisse is listed was questionable although he did train during the week. Kelyn Rowe and Andy Dorman are options on the right side with Juan Toja, who doesn't appear to be the same player he was before leaving MLS, available as a swing player.

The Fire's new midfield combination should have better success in possession against this group than it did against the Galaxy in the opener. New England doesn't have a central duo that can match the qualities of Juninho and Marcelo Sarvas so the unforced errors that seemed so prevalent last Sunday should be more scarce today. The match up on 0ne side of the pitch could be interesting to watch with Dilly Duka potentially facing rookie right back Andrew Farrell.

Fire fans may be disappointed if Bobby Shuttleworth has wrestled the starting goalkeeper position away from Matt Reis but could have another target of derision if former Fire forward Chad Barrett gets a start at forward.

Projected Line Ups

New England

GK Matt Reis

D Kevin Alston, Jose Goncalves, AJ Soares, Andrew Farrell

M Lee Nguyen, Clyde Simms, Kalifa Cisse, Kelyn Rowe

F Diego Fagundez, Jerry Bengston


GK Sean Johnson

D Gonzalo Segares, Austin Berry, Steven Kinney, Jalil Anibaba

M Dilly Duka, Joel Lindpere, Jeff Larentowicz, Patrick Nyarko

F Chris Rolfe, Sherjill MacDonald


Hilario Grajeda

Injury Report

Chicago: OUT - Arne Friedrich (hamstring), Logan Pause (quadriceps), Victor Pineda (meniscus)

New England: Matt Horth (ankle), Saer Sene (acl tear), Chris Tierney (ankle); QUESTIONABLE - Kalifa Cisse (groin), Kelyn Rowe (knee)


The Fire have had their way with New England at home over the last several seasons and that trend should continue.

Fire 2 Revolution 1

Picks around the league

Sporting KC 2 Toronto FC 1

Philadelphia 0 Colorado 0

Real Salt Lake 2 DC United 1

Vancouver 2 Columbus 1

Portland 3 Montreal 2

FC Dallas 2 Chivas USA 0

San Jose 2 New York 1

Misc Notes

Chris Rolfe is quite the thespian....check out the Fire's latest collaboration with jersey sponsor Quaker Oats in the video above.


Filed under: 2013 Regular Season

Tags: Chicago Fire


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  • Fire have one thing going for them ~ the Revs should be really fatigued being that this is their first game and all... ;)

  • Starting Line Ups

    GK Johnson
    D Kinney, Anibaba, Berry, Segares
    M Nyarko, Larentowicz, Lindpere, Duka
    F Rolfe, MacDonald

    Bench: Tornaghi, Videira, Atouba, Paladini, Thompson, ALex, Santos

    GK Reis
    D Farrell, Soares, Goncalves, Alston
    M Toja, Cisse, Simms, Smith
    F Nguyen, Bengston

    Bench: Shuttleworth, Barnes, Caldwell, Dorman, Rowe, Barrett, Fagundez

    A few interesting notes - it seems Kinney is out right and Anibaba is in the middle. MacDonald is also back in the starting eleven.

    Heaps moves Lee Nguyen into a forward role.

  • Revs are in a 4-2-3-1 with Toja in the hole and Nguyen on the right.

  • What's with the New England homer officiating?

  • Also Sherjill looks worse than useless out there. Blew a golden chance to score, and his hold-up play has been awful.

  • In reply to Ufficio:

    Good lord, make it two.

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    wow guys, i dont know if this is because i have been watching too much Champions League or not, but... this game is being played at a high school level.

  • Great job by our defenders. Good compliment to the comically bad display from the offense.

  • Jesus, we suck.

  • Terrible. Lindpere and Larentowicz have looked like a bust so far. Kinney looked better tonight for the most part. Fire proudly maintains their reputation for carefully avoiding employing any forward who might risk spoiling their "can't hit the broad side of the barn" reputation. If they don't show improvement soon, I may have to go back to watching the Cubs lose, since they can at least make it memorable.

  • Terrible waste of time and money.

    Lindpere looks like he's done he's too slow to be box to box and his running style reminds me of a slightly faster Cuah.
    Sherij definitely is not playing like a DP. After the game Chad Barrett called and asked him for his finishing back.
    The goal was Kinneys fault but pause would have been burned on that also.
    Rolfe played much better.
    Duka does not look like a MLS starter and was a turnover machine.
    The Fire touted their depth but that's just a way of saying everyone is pretty average so we can easily plug in a starter with a bench player and maintain mediocrity without losing a step.

  • In reply to MikeRUZE:

    Agree with almost everything, but I thought Duka showed pretty well despite giving it away cheaply at times. Definitely would have left him on and taken Lindpere off.

  • Ufficio is right. Sherjill was terrible. The whole team was a major disappointment. My first game this year. May be m last.

  • This team only has about 5 or 6 players that are worthy. Nyarko, Rolfe, Berry, Johnson, Freidrich and possibly Anibaba. Everyone else is just a mediocre player that wouldn't be really missed if they weren't there.

    On to the formation, we were beat in every position tonight. Lindpere is not a box to box or an attacking mid. He has no role, meaning he is useless out there. Jeff L is a taller Logan Pause. It's fine if we want to have a player like that but we need 3 in the middle then. A 433 makes more sense. We're asking too much of our outside mids with this formation. Having to defend because the wings are wide open was killing nyarko tonight.

    Coaching, wow... Down a goal and he takes off Rolfe? I guess it's better to lose 1-0 than 2-0. Leaving lindpere on the whole match is a mistake. Taking off Rolfe is a mistake. Starting McDonald is a mistake. The gameplay of bombing the ball forward no matter what is a mistake. Klopas was awful tonight. But I guess with the short week the players were tired...

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    Rolfe had some clever moves without the ball, but there was ZERO delivery or any attempt to even find him. Also, hard for the forwards to do any kind of work when the ball is not working its way up the pitch with any kind of consistency. Mac and Rolfe are not going to score goals like this. We need a good CAM and another winger to work with Patrick. The only way I can see us working this year is Patrick up to Rolfe or Mac. If we can't find another way, teams will shut us down pretty quickly.

  • In my morning after blues I get a sense of deja vu. Didn't the 2011 season start rather dismally with the team chattering on about it being a good group of guys and the team's great attitude? Only then they were piling up draws, not scoreless loses.

    I feel a great saddness for Patrick Nyarko, a very good winger, apparently destined to be the Ernie Banks of Chicago soccer, playing out his otherwise great career on a muddling team being run strictly as a business, never to win.

    Ah, well... It's still very early and we can claim they just need time while we quickly sell enough scarfs and tickets to make another year's profit.

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