After two successive defeats on the bounce, first to third-tier Union Omaha and then at the hands of Minnesota United, the Chicago Fire will be looking to get back to winning ways as they take on the New York Red Bulls at Soldier Field.
The Fire haven’t scored an MLS goal since March, and the rock-solid defense which has earned so many plaudits this season has shown some cracks over the last two weeks. It’s the roughest patch of the season for this young team, and they will have to shift focus to the next match. There’s still a long season ahead, but a third straight defeat would seemingly crush any momentum that was built in the opening weeks of the season.
Where will the goals come from?
As referenced before, the Fire haven’t scored in the league in five matches. Kacper Przybyłko has been a huge letdown, Shaqiri is yet to score from open play, and the rest of the team has hardly chipped in in the final third, resulting in a total lack of production. However, with Shaqiri now fully back from injury and Jairo Torres arriving next week, there is certainly reason for optimism. Brian Gutiérrez, too, has shown flashes that he could be a big-time player for the Fire, and if he can put it all together on the field, the Fire will have a very helpful tool at their disposal.
Containing the Red Bulls
The New York Red Bulls have been formidable on the road this season, winning all 4 of their away games this season. The Red Bulls are looking to become the first team to win their first 5 road games since the Galaxy did it more than 20 years ago. They are coming off of their most recent road win, a 3-0 drubbing of Orlando City at Exploria Stadium. The Fire can expect the typical high-pressing Red Bull team to put their ball-playing center backs to the test. “It’s a Red Bull team,” said Ezra Hendrickson before the match. “There’s no secret about what they like to do, how they like to play.” Lewis Morgan leads the team in scoring, with 4 goals.
Chicago Fire vs. New York Red Bulls
MLS Matchday #9 | Saturday, April 30 | Soldier Field, Chicago, IL
Kickoff: 7 p.m. CT
Referee: Jon Freemon
TV: WGN, CF97 Live, ESPN+ (outside Chicago)
Talent: Tyler Terens (play-by-play), Tony Meola (analyst)
Radio: TUDN 1200 AM
Live Twitter Updates: @HotTimeOldTown
Chicago Fire Injury Report
- QUESTIONABLE: Fabian Herbers (right hip)
- QUESTIONABLE: Kacper Przybyłko (left calf)
- QUESTIONABLE: Carlos Terán (left lower leg)
- OUT: Spencer Richey (head)
New York Red Bulls Injury Report
- OUT: Andres Reyes (foot)
- OUT: Caden Clark (knee)
- OUT: Serge Ngoma (hamstring)
Upcoming Chicago Fire Schedule
Saturday, May 7 - Atlanta United vs. Chicago Fire at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta (5 p.m. CT, WGN-TV and CF97 Live)
Saturday, May 14 - Chicago Fire vs. FC Cincinnati at Soldier Field, Chicago (7 p.m. CT, WGN-TV and CF97 Live)
Saturday, May 22 - NYCFC vs. Chicago Fire at Citi Field, Chicago (4 p.m. CT, WGN-TV and CF97 Live)