Hope for playoffs

Fire still in with a shout

Though a 3-0 loss to Brimstone Cup rivals FC Dallas Saturday
night left a sour taste for all fans of the Chicago Fire, the club’s hopes for
the 2011 MLS Cup playoffs are still alive going into this Friday’s match
against the Columbus Crew.

As the Fire sit on 29 points, they’ll undoubtedly need to
win all four remaining regular seasons matches to pass the eighth seeded San
Jose Earthquakes (41 points). In that scenario, they’ll also need to hope for
the Quakes to drop their four remaining regular season matches and have Eastern
Conference foes Kansas City gain no more than seven points in their last four
games.

It’s an uphill battle, but there’s reason to at least
believe the Fire could pull of the unlikely… It all starts this Friday as the
club celebrates its founding on October 8, 2007 with their 13
th
Anniversary match against the Columbus Crew. The team then has three opponents
with which they could defeat, finishing the season with home games against
Kansas City (October 12), DC United (October 16) and away to Chivas USA
(October 23).

The Fire’s final three opponents are all sides the team can
defeat. The Fire earned their first victory of the season, a 2-0 win at DC
United on April 17. The side dropped leads late in the season’s earlier games
with Chivas USA and Kansas City, surrendering goals in the last 15 minutes of
both matches and forcing the team to settle for a single point instead of
three.

Is it going to be a battle? Yes, but there’s still reason to
believe and what better way to start a comeback on the night of the club’s
anniversary.