Union Vs. Fire Preview: Chicago Makes Home Debut In 2012 MLS Season

MONTREAL, CANADA - MARCH 17: Members of the Montreal Impact stand in a wall formation on a penalty kick by Pavel Pardo #17 of the Chicago Fire during the MLS match at the Olympic Stadium on March 17, 2012 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The game ended tied 1-1. (Photo by Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images)

The Chicago Fire make their home debut on Saturday against the Philadelphia Union.

The Chicago Fire open their home season at Toyota Park in 2012 with a matchup against the Philadelphia Union on Saturday, March 24 at 7 p.m. CT. After playing the Montreal Impact to a 1-1 draw on March 17, the Fire will look to take down a Union squad that could be missing Chris Albright and Gabriel Farfan, but still boasts a nice combination up front with forwards Danny Mwanga and Lionard Pajoy.

SB Nation's Fire blog, Hot Time In Old Town, wonders whether head coach Frank Klopas will change up the 4-2-2-2 system used in the first game, "with the forwards and attacking mids (Oduro, Nyarko, Pappa and Grazzini) not playing very wide to allow the outside backs (Sega and Gargan) to exploit the space." Here is what comes to their mind with regards to this matchup:

Last weekend, just as in the U.S. Open Cup Final last season, Montreal deployed a very deep back line to prevent Oduro from getting behind them. This tactic severely limits Oduro and puts more emphasis on Grazzini to create chances. Montreal also kicked Grazzini out of the game which also limited the Fire to little more than speculative shots for almost the whole game. The one and only time Grazzini had time/space to create, he did - setting up Dom for the goal. If Philly try to man mark Grazzini or kick him off the field and/or play a deep back line, Klopas must change up the tactics to counter this.

Here is some information to help you find the game on Saturday:

Matchup: Chicago Fire vs. Philadelphia

Location: Union-Toyota Park, Bridgeview, IL

Game Time: 7:30 p.m., Saturday, March 24

TV: Comcast Sports Net Chicago / MLS Live / Direct Kick

For more on this match, stick with SB Nation Chicago. For more on the Fire, check out Hot Time in Hold Town. For more news and notes around the MLS, check out SB Nation's soccer news hub.

Trending Discussions

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SB Nation Chicago

You must be a member of SB Nation Chicago to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Chicago. You should read them.

Join SB Nation Chicago

You must be a member of SB Nation Chicago to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Chicago. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.