The Fire ended their three game road trip with a 2-2 draw in Los Angeles with the Galaxy. David Accam opened the scoring for the Fire with a well taken penalty, he also assisted on the second Fire goal when he slotted a great pass to Nemanja Nikolic. Accam was voted Man of the Mach for his performance. He also earned a MLS team of the week on the bench. Nikolic scored his 5th goal in 5 games, he is continuing his insane goal scoring rate from Legia Warsaw. While the Fire didn’t get the result they wanted, it gave them more opportunity to come together as a team. As Nikolic tweeted after the match “We cling together, and keep on fighting to reach our goals.” The Fire will now play three of their next four at home, beginning this Saturday as they welcome the Seattle Sounders. The guys will be extra motivated to win this one, with only one win against them.
The Fire will work on fixing the problems they faced on this road trip. The Fire gave up two goals in the LA game on set pieces which is normally a Fire strength. They will need to work on more ball possession and on staying focused for the whole game. Head Coach Veljko Paunovic said after the game, “well for us it feels like a loss.” Then added his thoughts on what was needed in the game, “We have to kill the game.” Paunovic did see progression in the play of the team. “I think our shape and defensive style and approach to the game is getting better, Possession was much better also in the first half.” Bastian Schweinsteiger had some thoughts on the team’s performance. “we didn’t find the free man, we rushed, we lost the ball too easy, then you lose a little bit control of the game.” Fire midfielder Juninho who made his first return to his former team said “It was special, when I was in the player tunnel, a lot of memories came to my head for sure, it was a very emotional moment, walking out to the field and seeing all those fans again.”
So “Road Trippin” over the Fire will begin to focus on “Home Sweet Home” First up Seattle, who again pose a tough test for the Fire. Then the Fire will welcome Colorado and USMNT goal keeper Tim Howard, it will take something special to beat Howard. However, I think Nikolic will be up to it.