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A look at key stats for the Chicago Fire through four weeks

Sometimes stats provide a glimmer of hope. These do not.

MLS: Philadelphia Union at Chicago Fire
Mauricio Pineda
Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports

Soccer is a cruel game. More than many other sports, it is capable of producing unfair results. Even when a team is struggling, there are stats that can help show whether a team is just a victim of bad luck, or whether the results on the pitch match what should be happening.

Unfortunately, the stats show through four games, the Chicago Fire are pretty bad:

  • Second-worst (tied) in MLS in goals scored (3), ahead of only FC Cincinnati (2)
  • Second-worst (tied) in MLS in goals allowed (9), behind only FC Cincinnati & Minnesota United (10)
  • Fifth-worst in passing completion (77.31%), ahead of D.C. United, Houston Dynamo, Philadelphia Union, and New York Red Bulls
  • Even in xG, where the Fire have traditionally been strong under Raphael Wicky, they’re only mid-pack at 4.9 xG. In xGA—expected goals allowed—they’re third worst in the Eastern Conference at 6.4 xGA, according to FBRef.

Where are the Fire above-average?

  • Seventh in MLS in interceptions (56)
  • Tenth in key passes (36)
  • Fourth in blocks (67)

And, here’s an interesting one:

  • Second-fewest amount of players used (18) - they’re tied with seven teams, and ahead of three more that used only (17).