Both of the Fire’s last two opponents have figured out how to douse the previously red hot Fire. So as the Fire welcome the New England Revolution they are hoping the local hardware stores forgot to stock the fire extinguishers. The Fire are hoping they can find the rhythm they had before the Gold Cup break during that eleven game unbeaten streak. Being back home at Toyota Park will help where they are 9-0-1. According to Michael De Leeuw “it’s a difficult team, but we are confident. The Fire are looking to make it a three victory sweep of New England, already having victories in New England and Toyota Park. The Fire won 3-0 on April 15 at Toyota Park thanks to a goal from Bastian Schweinsteiger and a brace from Nemanja Nikolic. They won the return fixture 2-1 in New England with goals from Nemanja Nikolic and Luis Solignac. Nikolic will hoping to find his scoring foot having scored 13 of his 16 goals at home. The Fire will be very happy to return to see their fans at fortress Toyota Park where they are 9-0-1.
Four Fire players took part in the MLS All Star game against Real Madrid. Bastian Schweinsteiger, Johan Kapplehof, Dax McCarty, and Nemanja Nikolic. Schweinsteiger was voted captain of the MLS All Stars, he played the first half with Kapplehoff. Kapplehoff posted a first half clean sheet. While McCarty assisted on Dom Dwyer’s goal in the 87th minute. The All Stars eventually fell to Real Madrid on penalty kicks. The visitors were the more cool customers converting all 4 spot kicks to the All Stars 2. McCarty said after the match, “For set pieces, maybe Real Madrid doesn’t scout MLS too well, maybe they didn’t know I’m decent in the air,” McCarty said wryly after the match. “Diego (Valeri) played a fantastic ball, I got around my man and I was able to get a good head on it. I’m kind of mad at myself, it was a perfect opportunity to just head it into the goal and it hit into the post. Dom does what goal scorers do and pounces on the loose ball, I’m just glad we scored.” The atmosphere in the stadium was incredible, with a record crowd of over 61 thousand. The match also made records for Television viewership in the USA and Canada with 2.1 million tuning in. The event showcased Chicago as a rich soccer environment and the growth of Major League Soccer. French soccer and Real Madrid legend now Real Madrid Head coach Zinedine Zidane had this to say about MLS after the match, ”MLS is a really good level [of soccer],” “We’ve seen really good players tonight. We saw a good game. The fans enjoyed it and that’s the most important thing.”