National Women’s Day
Since today is International Women’s Day, I thought I’d use this edition of my semi-weekly Musing column to write about gender equality among soccer fans and players. Did you know that FC Dallas has female capos? I did not know this until I read this great piece in What a Howler written by Gaby Kirschner. Gaby’s piece, linked below, identifies some of the following negative and positive points. Continue reading
I’m back, with another installment of my “Monday Musings” column on a Tuesday. Why am I back? Or, why was I gone? The answer to both questions is simple: a loss of “passion” for my beloved Chicago Fire Soccer Club. I’d been sitting on a draft of this piece, weighing whether my passion has been properly reignited. Yesterday gave me the proper perspective to gauge that it is the proper time to hit “publish”. Last season, after a series of tragic losses, I lost a bit of passion for the Club and the sport that I love. It didn’t help that fans and the front office were in general disagreement about pretty much everything. Fans protested, in a “Black Out” of sorts, with mixed results. It was a low point in my love for the Fire. My sons also started to give up hope, tired of giving up points after watching 90 minutes of nervous, and at times rudderless soccer. Against this backdrop, I couldn’t find anything positive to write about. My “muse” was gone. Continue reading
Ah, SCHADENFREUDE! Sepp Blatter has just announced his resignation!
Between coaching two AYSO teams, playing weekday and Sunday League soccer, being devoted to following the Chicago Fire, and watching the occasional EPL or friendly match, there’s not a lot of free time. Each time that I found time to start to draft a summary of the eventual downfall of FIFA as we know it, something new emerged as “breaking news.” Today was no different. As I started to type this story, a live press conference was scheduled to take place at FIFA headquarters in no-longer-neutral Switzerland.
Fire Lose, but Red Stars and Fire Academy top out the Weekend with Victories
The Fire lost to Real Salt Lake in the Fire’s lone meeting with this Western Conference opponent.
On the positive side, Section 8 was loud yesterday and the Chicago Red Stars were greeted with open arms by Section 8 supporters as well as their own supporters, Chicago Local 134. The Red Stars gave the fans something to cheer about, beating Boston Breakers, 3-0. Awesome scarf!
For good or for bad, the Fire’s loss did not have the gut punch of last year’s 3-2 loss to Salt Lake with late game goals. Rather, this time the Fire went down 2-0 and attempted a last minute comeback after Shaun Maloney earned a penalty kick in the 88th minute. Captain Jeff Larentowicz scored on a strong, well-placed shot. And credit to him to following up his shot and picking up the ball and running to the center circle with a sense of restrained urgency.
May the “Fourth” be with you on this fine May day.
A new contributor to OTF Soccer (George George Gorecki) will be providing a game summary of the Fire’s 1-0 loss on Sunday to Sporting KC. You can read it here: http://otfsoccer.com/2015/05/05/tactical-notes-sporting-kansas-city-have-the-edge-over-the-fire/
In light of George’s considerable soccer acumen, I will simply offer my usual “fluff” and highlight some clever Tweets from Sunday’s frustrating loss.
Here is my third installment of “Monday Musings.” As always, it’s a mix of insight, analysis and fluff.
Part I – Fired Up Friday
First off, after some notable snipping on Twitter among Fire fans, it’s a relief to see everyone happy after the Fire got its third victory of the season on a cold and blustery Friday night. While not quite a sell out in terms actual attendance, the crowd was very loud, and truly into this match. It has been a long time since we’ve had this type of atmosphere at Toyota Park. Section 8 was very active and there was even stereo effect between Section 8 and Sector Latino during goal kicks. You all know the irksome chant. Someone did their best to translate it when Montreal’s Evan Bush was subjected to this “friendly greeting.”
Here’s my latest “Monday Musings” contribution on various topics: a weekend without the Fire; #scrimmagegate; fitness; Aston Villa vs. Liverpool; Wrigley Field and “Tweets of the Week.”
Part 1, What’s a Fire Fan to Do Without a Fire Game?
With the Fire not playing this weekend, what’s a Fire fan to do? Many Fire fans made the trip to Lisle see the Chicago Red Stars play.
There’s a new editor in charge of “On The Fire”, and with that, I’ve decided to step up and write a new column. Without further ado, here is the first episode of “Vlaha’s Monday Musings”. Today’s piece comes in four parts…
Part One, “The Empire Strikes Back”, #Schedulegate
First stop on today’s installment is #Schedulegate. Fire fans are justifiably upset about recent schedule changes which apparently were going to happen whether or not the Front Office was going to go along with them.
Although I can’t say that the Fire was a team firing on all cylinders during the team’s 3-2 Ping-Pong victory against Toronto, the team looked vastly improved over recent games. As a result of this win, the Fire could have strutted into our scheduled games Foxborough Massachusetts (this Wednesday) and Montreal (this weekend) with a bit of a “we can do this” swagger…