(Photo courtesy Associated Press)
The good feelings from the Chicago Fire’s three-game unbeaten streak faded quickly in the aftermath of their 3:1 defeat to Toronto FC on Friday at BMO Field. The home side had displayed rather indifferent form at BMO so far this season, so they definitely came out ready to play on Friday. The Fire won the possession battle 55% to 45%, but it felt as though they spent much of the contest in chase mode. The Fire now have eleven points from their seven matches and find themselves entrenched in a crowded Eastern Conference table.
The Fire were also on the wrong side of some poor refereeing from veteran arbiter Silviu Petrescu, who missed a shove by Jozy Altidore on goalkeeper Jorge Bava in the run-up to Toronto’s first goal. Then, in the second half, a Justin Morrow handball was adjudged to have occurred outside the penalty area, but the replay showed that Morrow was entirely inside the box when he handled the ball. In MLS, the margins between many teams are very thin. With points on the road so hard to come by, such fundamental errors can be game-changers.
Seeing The Men in Red play at home is really just half the fun, but not all Fire fans are able to see them anywhere else. To experience the joys of an Away Game by proxy, OTF contributor Jacob Peters provides us some background on Fire supporter group history on-the-road, established rivalries, and some footnotes on how to effectively criticize, troll, and generally enjoy Fire away games.
Sing in full voice. Hate with reason…
Toronto is kind of like an alternate reality Chicago. One in which we didn’t tear out our Streetcars in the 50s, decided to randomly insert “u’s” into our words unnecessarily, expanded Meigs Field into a discount airline hub, and never built the elevated portions of the “L”. It’s also an alternate reality in which the Chicago Fire built a stadium downtown adjacent to McCormick Place (this guy’s still holding onto that dream), and then we expanded it with an epic roof.
Toyota Park is nice, but this…drool
“That hunger to be out there and play is what I’m all about.” ~Robert Earnshaw, on what he brings to CF97. Don’t tell me, show me, Robert.
OTF’s Jon Denham gets you ready for Saturday’s action north of the border, while The Yorkies return with an Earnshaw scouting report…
Quincy Amarikwa: “Draw me like one of your Fire matches.” (YahooSports)
OTF’s Brian Howe Battle ruins your World Cup afterglow with a soddy, soggy affair…
Back in the saddle, Canadian stylee.
OTF’s Stephen Mangat is on his high horse…
New year, new you. That goes for both Mike Magee and Toronto FC (mlssoccer.com)
OTF’s Jon Denham revisits the roster, the standings, and the injury list while Tony Walsh of the Yorkies celebrates North America Day!
After a long vacation, OTF’s resident MLS expert Stephen Mangat is back to bring you his signature look at the clubs from the East… Let the .gif parade commence!