Fire earns three crucial points in 2-1 comeback win over New England

More than a third of the MLS season remains for the Chicago Fire, but last night may very well have been a turning point for the team as the Men in Red rallied for a 2-1 victory over the New England Revolution. The win puts them three points ahead of the Revs, in sole possession of fourth place in the Eastern Conference and right into the thick of a crowded playoff hunt.

The Fire started brightly enough at Toyota Park, with Freddie Ljungberg once again at the center of the attack. The finishing touch was not quite there, though, and the Revolution began to get into the match. Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson was called into action twice in the first 15 minutes, and while the rookie made two good saves, he could do nothing when New England opened the scoring in the 16h minute. Chicago’s All-Star defender Wilman Conde slipped with the ball under pressure, allowing Marko Perovic to charge into the box for a one-v-one with the keeper. Johnson went for the ball, but Perovic rounded him and easily slid the ball into the empty net to strike first blood.

By: Sam Svoboda

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Fire acquire Freddie Ljungberg, gearing up for 2007-esque late season surge?

freddie-ljungberg

In a week where the team traded veteran midfielder Justin Mapp and unveiled new Designated Player Nery Castillo, the changes keep coming for the Chicago Fire- yesterday, the team announced the acquisition of midfielder Freddie Ljungberg from the Seattle Sounders.

Ljungberg, 33, brings with him one of the most impressive resumes in MLS. He rose to fame playing on the wing for Arsenal of the English Premier League, enjoying a legendary nine year spell for the Gunners. Ljungberg played an integral role in winning two league titles- most famously in 2003-2004, when the “Invincibles” went the entire league season without losing a match- and three FA Cups. He also scored 15 goals in a ten year career international with Sweden, captaining his country in the final two years before his international retirement in 2008. The midfielder impressed after coming to MLS last year as well, being named captain of the 2009 MLS all-star team.

by Sam Svoboda

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Chicago Fire Finish SuperLiga on a High Note

chicago fire

The Chicago Fire came into Tuesday’s game against the UNAM Pumas in last place in Group B with no chance of advancing. Pumas on the other hand were in third place and had a slim chance of advancing. They needed a loss by Morelia and a five-goal win over the Fire. The Former came true, as the New England Revolution continued their unexpected run by beating Morelia 1-0. Unfortunately, this meant little for Pumas, because they were unable to muster even a single goal against the Fire.

For a team that needed not only a win, but at least five goals, it was a very disappointing effort by Pumas, who came out uninspired from the get-go. In the 35th minute, Fire defender Wilman Conde headed in the deciding goal off a corner from midfielder Marco Pappa, both of whom are MLS All-Stars. Pumas was unable to answer back, losing 1-0.

By: Justin Mertes-Mistretta

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Chicago Fire Hope to Play Spoiler Against UNAM Pumas

chicago fire

The Chicago Fire head into tonight’s game against UNAM Pumas mathematically eliminated from the 2010 SuperLiga. However, the Fire can play spoilers to Pumas, who need a miracle to advance. Expect this game to be entertaining from the first whistle, as Pumas needs to win by at least five goals to have any shot at advancing past the group stage. This should give the Fire, who has struggled to score all season, a chance to right the ship offensively. While this game may not mean a lot in terms of 2010 SuperLiga success, it means everything for the future success of the Fire. On a four-game losing streak, a victory would give this team a much needed confidence booster heading back into the MLS regular season.

The Fire has shown absolutely to team chemistry out on the pitch. This could be largely due to the fact that head coach Carlos de los Cabos seems to be tinkering with the line-ups every game. One move that has been beneficial for the Fire has been the decision to start backup goalie Sean Johnson, who looked spectacular in Saturday’s game against New England. He went 76 minutes without allowing a goal. This was a stark contrast to goalie Andrew Dykstra, who looked lost against Morelia giving up 5 goals.

By: Justin Mertes-Mistretta

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Chicago Fire in Last Place After Loss to Revolution

chicago fire

After getting trounced by Monaracas Morelia last Wednesday 5-1, the Chicago Fire needed, at the very least, a tie against a hot New England Revolution team on Saturday night.

The SuperLiga has been a rebirth for the Revolution (4-9-2 in the MLS), upsetting UNAM Pumas in their first group match. It was a night-and-day difference between the Fire and the Revolution, as the former was reeling from a myriad of issues and the latter was playing as confident as ever.

By: Justin Mertes-Mistretta

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Chicago Fire to Announce New Signing Tonight at 8 PM CT

Fire Franchise Player

Tonight at 8 PM CT, the Chicago Fire will announce the signing of a Designated Player. The announcement will be made directly after the Fire’s SuperLiga match against New England Revolution, which kicked off at 6 PM CT. A press conference will be held by head coach Carlos de los Cobos following the announcement.

By: Justin Mertes-Mistretta

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