“The key game in our season,” Fire striker Robert Berić said. “The mentality is, there’s no choice, we have to win this game.”
The Fire can also get in with a draw or loss today, but that’s a can of worms the Fire won’t want to open. Here are all the scenarios that could get them in today:
— OR —
- Chicago Fire tie vs. New York City FC AND
- Atlanta United lose or tie vs. Columbus Crew SC AND
- Inter Miami CF lose or tie vs. FC Cincinnati
— OR —
- Atlanta United lose vs. Columbus Crew SC AND
- Inter Miami CF lose or tie vs. FC Cincinnati AND
- D.C. United lose or tie vs. Montréal Impact
If Chicago makes it, they’d play Friday, Nov. 20 in the Eastern Conference play-in round. As the 9 or 10 seed, the Fire would likely play Nashville SC or the New York Red Bulls, but there’s an outside chance it could be the New England Revolution, too.
But first, they’ll need a win (or a lot of help) today.
Berić Golden Boot Chances?
Robert Berić heads into the final game of the season tied with Gyasi Zardes and Raul Ruidiaz with 11 goals, good for second place in MLS. LAFC’s Diego Rossi leads the league with 14 goals, meaning Berić would need a hat trick—and no goals from Rossi—to grab a share of the Golden Boot. On a stronger team, Berić would have a chance at winning the league MVP award. He should at least get some votes in the Newcomer of the Year category. From the Malort shot to the final day, it’s been a very strong first season in Chicago for the Slovenian.
Chicago Fire FC vs. New York City FC
MLS Regular Season Finale | Sunday, Nov. 8 | Soldier Field, Chicago
Kickoff: 2:30 p.m. CT
Steaming: ESPN+ (sign up using our link, and help support Hot Time!)
Radio: TUDN 1200 AM
Live Twitter Updates: @HotTimeOldTown (from Ruben)
Chicago Fire FC Injuries
- OUT: GK - Kenneth Kronholm (torn ACL, meniscus tear 8/11, out for season)
- OUT: M - Luka Stojanovic (MCL surgery 7/23)
New York City FC Injuries
- OUT: M - Gedion Zelalem (knee injury, out for season)
- OUT: D - Tayvon Gray (out for season)
- OUT: F - Heber (torn ACL 9/23, out for season)
- OUT: M - James Sands (right foot fracture, out for season)
- OUT: M - Ismael Tajouri-Shradi (not medically cleared)