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This Week in MLS – Chicago Fire Look to Celebrate 15th Anniversary with three wins

 


Chicago Fire Look to Celebrate 15th Anniversary with three wins

The Chicago Fire is gearing up for a crucial nine-day stretch wrought with playoff implications as nine points are on the line during the Fire’s three games. The balanced Fire roster has seen 15 different players tally in 2012 will look to continue their ascent in the standings and maintain their offensive surge.  Through their last eight games, the Fire have scored at least two goals in each contest. 

 

This Friday the Fire (53 points) travel to play Eastern Conference leader Sporting Kansas City (55 points) live on NBC Sports Network at 8:30 p.m. ET. Both teams are vying for a playoff spot, first place in the East, and positioning in the Supporters’ Shield race.
 

With a win, Kansas City would clinch a spot in the playoffs. Chicago could clinch with a win, but would also need a little bit of help from intraconference clubs Philadelphia Union and New England Revolution later in the weekend.

 

After hosting Philadelphia Union on Wednesday, October 3, the Fire will head east for a battle with the New York Red Bulls that will be broadcast live on NBC at 3:30 p.m. ET.

 

The matches lead up to a significant date in the club’s history, as the Chicago Fire celebrate the 15-year anniversary of the club’s founding on October 8, 1997.

 

Three Teams in Position to Secure Playoff Spots

This week sees three teams in position to secure a berth in the MLS Cup Playoffs. 

 

Seattle Sounders FC will clinch a playoff spot IF

OR

 

Sporting Kansas City will clinch a playoff spot IF

OR

OR

 

Chicago Fire will clinch a playoff spot IF

AND

 

Philadelphia Union will be eliminated from playoff contention IF

OR

OR

 

Portland Timbers will be eliminated from playoff contention IF

AND

OR

 

Colorado Rapids will be eliminated from playoff contention IF

 

Chivas USA will be eliminated from playoff contention IF

 

MLS Week 29 National Broadcasts

 

Friday, September 28

Sporting Kansas City vs. Chicago Fire, 8:30 p.m. ET (NBC Sports Network)

 

Saturday, September 29

Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs. Seattle Sounders FC, 9 p.m. ET (NBC Sports Network/TSN2/RDS2)

 

Sunday, September 30

Colorado Rapids vs. LA Galaxy, 7 p.m. ET (Galavision)

 

AT&T MLS Goal of the Week (Week 29) – CLICK HEREto vote

 

Check It Out




New York Red Bulls: Hackensack UMC Visit


San Jose Earthquakes:Earthquakes in the Community

Vancouver Whitecps:Raise-a-Reader 2012

 

MLS Week 30 Previews

(Home team listed first; all times Eastern)

 

Friday, September 28

Sporting Kansas City vs. Chicago Fire, 8:30 p.m. (NBC Sports Network)

 

Saturday, September 29

New York Red Bulls vs. Toronto FC, 7 p.m.

 

Columbus Crew vs. Philadelphia Union, 7:30 p.m.

 

Houston Dynamo vs. New England Revolution, 8:30 p.m.

 

Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs. Seattle Sounders FC, 9 p.m. (NBC Sports Network/TSN2/RDS2)

 

Portland Timbers vs. D.C. United, 10:30 p.m.

 

San Jose Earthquakes vs. FC Dallas, 10:30 p.m.

 

Chivas USA vs. Real Salt Lake, 10:30 p.m.

 

Sunday, September 30

Colorado Rapids vs. LA Galaxy, 7 p.m. (Galavision)

 

Quotables

 

“I keep telling [head coach] Jay [Heaps] I'm a target forward. He doesn't believe me. Finally. It kind of felt like LeBron (James) winning his first championship. It's been a long time coming.”

-- New England Revolution defender Darrius Barnes after scoring his first career goal in the 1-1 draw vs. New York

 

“I think a lot of people kind of counted us out a couple months ago so to clinch it with four games to go is making a pretty large statement.”

-- LA Galaxy’s Mike Magee after his team qualified for the MLS Cup Playoffs following a 4-2 win vs. Toronto FC

 

“I appreciate a lot of their assists – they put it on platters for me. A lot of them are team goals, but I take pride in scoring goals that are game-winners, because those mean a lot.”

-- San Jose Earthquakes forward Chris Wondolowski after scoring his MLS-record 10th game-winning goal in his team’s 2-1 win at Seattle

 

“You've got some great fans up here and it creates a great atmosphere. When you have a good atmosphere, it helps raise my level, I think. It makes me want to raise it a little extra notch.”

-- Wondolowski, to the San Jose Mercury News, after scoring his 22nd goal of the season

 

“In this situation when we know that we haven’t won here in 10 years and they give you a gift of the three points and then you just don’t use it, it’s like a gift card you throw away.”

-- New York Red Bulls midfielder Joel Lindpere after the New England Revolution scored the equalizer in stoppage time after his team had scored earlier in stoppage time, leaving the teams in a 1-1 draw. New York has not won at New England since 2002.

 

“Unbelievable. I feel like we’re the type of team that scores more in the run of play than most teams. But those were two incredible set pieces. Greatstrikes.”

-- Real Salt Lake defender Chris Wingert, to the The Salt Lake Tribune, after his team scored two goals directly from free kicks for a 2-1 win against Portland that secured a place in the MLS Cup Playoffs

 

Sweet Tweets

 

@MLS_Insider – September 24
. @EASPORTSFIFA#FIFA13Launch Week, @DarrenMattockson downloadable cover. Three others joining him unveiled tonight. pic.twitter.com/dIOc5Qt8

 

@DarrenMattocks – September 21
Thanks @MLS@WhitecapsFCmy coaching staff my team-mates you guys should get the majority of the praises I'm humbled by this achievement. #24Under24

 

‏@StJude – September 21
Join @MLS& @MLSWORKSin helping @StJudereach the most important goal – a cure for childhood cancer: http://bit.ly/SJGoals2012 #GoalsforStJude

 

@SportingKC – September 19
Hey @Beyonce, did you see @BigAfrika88& @KeiKamara's most recent goal celebration? http://bit.ly/ND8MzX #MLS#NYvSKC

 

@arlowhite – September 22
Need to get to SLC airport quick and get this game on the old lap top. Wondo on fire, Zakuani scores!! #SEAvSJE

 

‏@alecko11 (Alecko Eskandarian) – September 23
Me: "Gervinho!!! Are you freaking kidding me???" My Mom: "Don't act like that's never happened to you before..." #Hindsight101#ThanksMom

 

@SportingKC – September 19
Not in Kansas anymore? No problem. #SportingKCcontinues to have the best away record in MLS. pic.twitter.com/TNhZ0Eg1

 

 

 





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  • Chicago Fire Look to Celebrate 15th Anniversary with three wins


  • Playoff Race Update: Three Teams in Position to Secure Playoff Spots


  • AT&T Goal of the Week (Week 29)


  • Week 30 Match Previews


  • Quotables & Sweet Tweets

     



    • Seattle Sounders FC win or tie vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC on Saturday



    • FC Dallas tie or lose vs. San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday



    • Sporting Kansas City win vs. Chicago Fire on Friday



    • Columbus Crew lose to Philadelphia Union on Saturday



    • Sporting Kansas City tie vs. Chicago Fire on Friday AND


    • Columbus Crew tie vs. Philadelphia Union on Saturday OR


    • Houston Dynamo lose to New England Revolution on Saturday



    • Chicago Fire win vs. Sporting Kansas City on Friday



    • Columbus Crew lose to Philadelphia Union on Saturday OR


    • Houston Dynamo lose to New England Revolution on Saturday



    • Philadelphia Union lose to Columbus Crew on Saturday



    • Houston Dynamo win vs. New England Revolution on Saturday



    • Philadelphia Union tie vs. Columbus Crew on Saturday AND


    • Houston Dynamo tie vs. New England Revolution on Saturday



    • Portland Timbers lose to D.C. United on Saturday



    • Vancouver Whitecaps FC win or tie vs. Seattle Sounders FC on Saturday OR


    • FC Dallas win vs. San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday



    • Portland Timbers tie vs. D.C. United on Saturday AND


    • Vancouver Whitecaps FC win vs. Seattle Sounders FC on Saturday



    • Colorado Rapids lose to LA Galaxy on Sunday AND


    • Vancouver Whitecaps FC win vs. Seattle Sounders FC on Saturday



    • Chivas USA lose to Real Salt Lake on Saturday AND


    • Vancouver Whitecaps FC win vs. Seattle Sounders FC on Saturday



    • Danny Mwanga (POR)


    • Juninho (LA)


    • Javier Morales (RSL)


    • Robbie Keane (LA)


    • Simon Dawkins (SJ)



    • Trail-blazing: The Fire have won four games in a row, their longest winning streak in seven years, matching the club’s longest since winning 11 in a row in its inaugural campaign of 1998.


    • Sporting searching: Kansas City have not defeated Chicago at home since 2007. The Fire have won two of the six meetings since, with four draws.



    • Trading places: The teams are meeting for the second time this season, after New York’s Jan Gunnar Solli and TFC’s Danny Koevermans traded goals in the first six minutes for a 1-1 draw, June 30 at BMO Field.


    • Silva platter: Rookie Luis Silva has been involved in each of TFC’s last four goals, with assists in each of the last three games to go with his fifth goal of the season Saturday vs. the LA Galaxy.


    • No outlet: Toronto FC are now winless in 10 consecutive games, besting their nine-game losing streak to start the season and two games shy of their most consecutive games without a win in a single season.



    • Much Adu about something: Freddy Adu scored the first two-goal game of his MLS career, leading Union to a 3-1 win on Sunday against the Houston Dynamo.


    • Hot Streak: Jairo Arrieta scored his sixth goal in 14 games since coming to MLS in the Crew’s 2-1 loss to Chicago over the weekend; he has a goal or an assist in three consecutive games.



    • Like LeBron: Revolution defender Darrius Barnes scored his first professional goal, in his 88th MLS appearance, in giving his side a dramatic 1-1 draw with New York on Saturday, extending the Red Bulls’ winless streak in New England to 10 years.


    • Hanging by a thread: After their Aug. 3 win vs. New York, the Dynamo were tied for the Eastern Conference lead. They’ve won just one of seven games since, following their 3-1 defeat at Philadelphia last weekend, and now sit in fifth place in the division, holding onto the final playoff spot by a single point.



    • West Coast clash: The Cascadia Cup rivals are meeting for a third time this season. Sounders FC’s Fredy Montero scored in the 90th minute in yet another wild finish at BC Place, leaving the teams in a 2-2 draw on May 19. Montero and Eddie Johnson scored in a 2-0 Seattle win, Aug. 18 at CenturyLink Field.


    • Getting over the hump: Whitecaps FC have yet to win an MLS game vs. Sounders FC. Seattle has won twice in four all-time meetings in the league, with two draws.


    • Sounding off: Sounders FC lost for just the second time since the end of June in their 2-1 home loss to San Jose last weekend that kept them from clinching a berth in the MLS Cup Playoffs.



    • Lockdown: D.C. United have won three games in a row and recorded shutouts in back-to-back games for the first time this season after their 1-0 win Sunday vs. Chivas USA.


    • No De Ro, no problem: United midfielder Branko Boskovic scored his first MLS goal, in his third season in the league, to give United a crucial three points in their bid for a first playoff appearance since 2007.



    • Wondo’s world: Chris Wondolowski continued his bid to become the MLS all-time single-season goal scoring leader, netting his 22nd of the campaign to give the Earthquakes a 2-1 win Saturday at Seattle. It’s the most goals in a season since Carlos Ruiz scored 24 and Taylor Twellman scored 23 in 2002; Roy Lassiter scored 27 in the league’s first season of 1996, still the record.


    • Third time’s the charm: The teams are meeting for the third time season, after playing twice in three weeks in July. They reached a scoreless draw July 7 in Frisco, before goals from Marvín Chavez and Alan Gordon led the Quakes to a 2-1 home win on July 18.



    • Set piece magic: Fabian Espíndola scored his first goal since June 16, and Javier Morales scored his first since June 23 – both directly from free kicks – to lead Real Salt Lake to a 2-1 win against Portland, clinching a place in the MLS Cup Playoffs.


    • Sustained Excellence: RSL has reached the MLS Cup Playoffs in five consecutive seasons, the League's longest active streak, and a feat that could be matched this year only by the Columbus Crew (who enter the week in sixth place in the Eastern Conference and out of the playoff spots).


    • Free falling: Chivas USA saw their winless streak extended to nine games – their longest since their inaugural season of 2005 – and their goalless streak extended to 352 minutes (second-longest in MLS this season) in their 1-0 loss at D.C. United.



    • In top form: Robbie Keane pulled into a tie for second in the MLS Golden Boot standings with his 13th and 14th goals – 10 in his last 12 games – in the Galaxy’s 4-2 win vs. Toronto FC, their fourth in row which secured their place in the MLS Cup Playoffs.


    • Firing on all cylinders: Landon Donovan is now tied for the MLS assist lead with 14, with Sporting KC’s Graham Zusi, after setting up Keane’s second last weekend. Juninho scored two goals in the win vs. Toronto, and has four goals over the last four games.