The Fire will play their home opener against Real Salt Lake this Saturday March 11 at 1:00 pm. The Fire hold a 3-3-4 home record against Real Salt Lake. The match will give the Fire Faithful their first up close look at the new Fire. The Tifos and flags will be flying in the Harlem end of the stadium. The Fire supporters group Section 8 will be in full voice, chants will ring out. Fans will be hoping to cheer their Men in Red to victory. The fire will be hoping to make Toyota Park a fortress, make opponents afraid to play here.
The Match will be special for forward Michael de Leeuw and defender Johan Kappelhof who will have a reunion with former FC Gronningen teammate Albert Rusnak who now plays for RSL. But according to de Leeuw “He’s coming here so no points for him.” The match will also mark the debut of midfielder Juninho. He was suspended for the Columbus match. Fans will be excited to see how the new midfield pairing of Juninho and Dax McCarty will play out. Both bring experience leadership and passion to a team that was missing last season. The new attacking force of Nickolic, de Leeuw and Accam will be tested as there are going up against one of the best goalkeepers in MLS Nick Rimando, who holds the record for most wins in MLS. The fire will be hoping to not add to that record. He is also one the best penalty kick savers in MLS, so receiving a penalty is not an easy goal. John Goossens suffered a terrible injury to his ankle in the Columbus game that will keep him out for 5-6 months, let’s wish him a speedy recovery.
So Fire fans lets cheer, chant and will our Men in Red on to victory. Let’s serve notice to the rest of MLS, the Fire will be defending their home. The Tradition, Honor and passion of the fire legacy will once again make Toyota Park a fortress.