Chicago Fire Face Long-Time Foe Columbus Crew

A look at the week ahead for the Men In Red as they prepare to take on the Columbus Crew

Patrick Nyarko

Photo Credit: 
Brian Kersey Chicago Fire

CHICAGO FIRE WELCOME EASTERN CONFERENCE RIVAL COLUMBUS CREW TO TOYOTA PARK
The Chicago Fire (1-4-1, 4 points) welcome long-time rivals Columbus Crew (2-1-3, 9 points) to Toyota Park on Saturday, April 20 at 7:30 p.m. CT.
 
This is the first of three meetings between the Fire and Crew this season. The Fire head to the Buckeye state for the second and third legs of the series on Saturday, June 22 at 7:00 p.m. CT and Saturday, Sept. 21 at 6:30 p.m. CT respectively.
 
The two squads met three times during the 2012 season. Austin Berry found the back of the net in front of 600 traveling supporters but it wasn’t enough to overcome goals from Eddie Gaven and Emilio Renteria as the Fire fell 2-1 at Crew Stadium May 26. The Fire received first half strikes from Marco Pappa and Dominic Oduro before a red card to Gonzalo Segares forced the team to battle out a gutsy 2-1 victory over the Crew at Toyota Park June 23. In the final meeting between the two squads, trailing 1-0, Chris Rolfe score two goals in the span of three minutes to down the Crew 2-1 at Toyota Park Sept. 22.
 
The Crew enter the match after a 1-1 draw with the Montreal Impact at Stade Saputo on Saturday, April. 14.
 
CHICAGO FIRE TRAINING SCHEDULE: April 15 – April 22
 
Monday, April 15:          Off                    
Tuesday, April 16:         Training 10:00 a.m. CT*^          
Wednesday, April 17:    Training 10:00 a.m. CT* - Toyota Park Stadium Field     
Thursday, April 18:        Training 10:00 a.m. CT*^
Friday, April 19:             Training 10:00 a.m. CT*^             
Saturday, April 20:         Chicago Fire vs. Columbus Crew – Toyota Park – 7:30 p.m. CT  
Sunday, April 21:           Off      
Monday, April 22:          Training 10:00 a.m. CT*^
 
*Training will take place on the Toyota Park Practice Field unless otherwise noted     
^Times are approximate and subject to change. Fire players and coaches will be made available following training. Please contact the Chicago Fire Communications Department for updated times and locations. Please contact Eunice Kim for media requests.
 
CHICAGO FIRE vs. Columbus Crew

  • The Fire hold a 22-12-13 all-time regular season record against the Crew, including a 13-5-7 record in matches played at home.
  • The Fire have not lost to the Crew at home since a 4-1 decision Oct. 7, 2006.
  • Fire midfielder Dilly Duka began his professional career with the Columbus Crew. After a standout collegiate career at Rutgers University, the Montville, N.J. product was selected in the first round (eight overall) of the 2010 MLS SuperDraft by the Crew. In three seasons, Duka scored two goals and tallied five assists in 45 matches. The Men in Red acquired Duka and the right of first refusal to midfielder Robbie Rogers in exchange for Dominic Oduro Feb. 4, 2013.  
  • Current Crew forward Dominic Oduro spent the 2011 and 2012 seasons as a member of the Men in Red. In 66 regular season appearances, the Ghanaian striker scored 18 goals and tallied five assists.
  • Crew defender Eric Gehrig and midfielder Ethan Finlay are products of the Chicago Fire PDL system.
  • Two Fire players hail from the Buckeye state. Cincinnati, Ohio product Austin Berry was named 1st Team All State and Division III Southwest Ohio Player of the Year while playing all four seasons before graduating from Summit Country Day. Born in Kettering, Ohio, Fire forward Chris Rolfe matriculated to nearby University of Dayton where he concluded his collegiate career as sixth all-time at UD in goals with 31, and set UD’s single-season and career assist records with 10 in 2004 and 25 in his collegiate career.
  • The Crew are the team the Rolfe has score against the most, with eight of his 45 regular season coming against the Crew.  

 
CHICAGO FIRE DROP HARD-FOUGHT 2-1 MATCH TO HOUSTON DYNAMO
The Chicago Fire fell 2-1 to the Houston Dynamo at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston, Texas Sunday afternoon. Fire forward Chris Rolfe equalized in the 29th minute just three minutes after the Dynamo’s Will Bruin opened scoring, but the Fire were unable to find a second comeback after an 81st minute Brad Davis strike gave the hosts the lead.
 
The hosts got on the board first in the 26th minute when Davis drove in a cross to the top of the six-yard box to Bruin, who powered his header down and into the back of the net to give the Dynamo the 1-0 lead.
 
Just minutes later, Rolfe scored his first goal of the season with the 29th minute equalizer. Deep in the Dynamo half, Gonzalo Segares sent a throw-in to Sherjill MacDonald inside the penalty area. With his back towards goal, the Dutchman held off his defender, brought the ball down and centered it to Daniel Paladini at the penalty spot. Paladini took a touch and played it into the path of an onrushing Rolfe, and the Fire forward sent his right-footed blast past Dynamo ‘keeper Tally Hall and into the back of the net.
 
In the 63rd minute Dynamo midfielder Andrew Driver shook his defender and went racing unopposed towards goal but Johnson quickly got down to block the shot.
 
The hosts broke the deadlock in the 81st minute. Kofi Sarkodie received the ball on the right flank and centered his pass to Davis. The Dynamo captain whipped in a cross from 25 yards out that went into the goal untouched.
 
Again looking for the equalizer, the Fire continued to press and got their best chance in the 84th minute. Joel Lindpere drove in a corner kick and found Jeff Larentowicz on the edge of the six-yard box but his header banged off the crossbar.
 
CHICAGO FIRE TO HOST THIRD ANNUAL ART OF FUTBOL EVENT, SUBMISSIONS CLOSE APRIL 19
The Chicago Fire Soccer Club will showcase artwork from Chicagoland artists who submitted original pieces that celebrate the beautiful game of soccer at the Third Annual Art of Futbol event at the Society Art Gallery (2140 W. Fulton Street, Chicago, IL 60612) on Thursday, May 16 from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. CT.
 
Hosted by the Chicago Fire Foundation, the club has put out a call to Chicagoland artists looking for original works that celebrate the game of soccer and everything it represents. Soccer is a game that permeates all aspects of our city, encompassing varied views and opposing opinions. The Art of Futbol provides an opportunity for artists to share their vision with the local community.  
 
Artists interested in creating and submitting original artwork can email up to three JPEG files to artoffutbol@chicago-fire.com. The deadline for submitting artwork is this Friday, April 19. Additional information on submitting artwork can be found here. Tickets for the event, which start at $25 and benefit the Chicago Fire Foundation, can be purchased here.
 
CHICAGO FIRE VS. COLUMBUS CREW TICKETS AVAILABLE ON LIVINGSOCIAL
Tickets for the Chicago Fire vs. Columbus Crew match are now available through LivingSocial. Fire fans can choose one of two ticket package options:
 
Pay $18 ($38 value) for one Corner Kick ticket, including a hot dog and soda
Pay $30 ($60 value) for one Premier ticket, including a sling backpack
 
Information on the LivingSocial deal can be found here.
 
CHICAGO FIRE SEASON AND INDIVIDUAL TICKETS ON SALE
Individual single game tickets for the club’s 16th MLS season at Toyota Park are now on sale.
 
One of the most affordable live events in the Chicagoland area, single game ticket prices start as low as $20 and can be purchased via Ticketmaster.
 
Season Tickets are also available by calling 1-888-MLS-FIRE, via Ticketmaster or by heading to the club’s official website at www.Chicago-Fire.com.
 
FIRE IN THE NEWS
 
Fire upbeat as they try to build on first victory – Jack McCarthy – Chicago Tribune – April 13, 2013
http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/soccer/ct-spt-0414-fire-chicago-201...
 
Fire’s locker room enforcer has softer side – Orrin Schwarz – Daily Herald – April 12, 2013
http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20130412/sports/704129758/?interstiti...
 
Fire’s Daniel Paladini, Maicon Santos poking into starting picture – Chicago Sun-Times – April 13, 2013
http://www.suntimes.com/sports/soccer/fire/19431642-626/fires-daniel-pal...
 
Now Frank Klopas has some options – Len Ziehm – CSNChicago.com – April 12, 2013
http://www.csnchicago.com/fire/now-frank-klopas-has-some-options
 
Healthy competition: Chicago Fire getting healthy, giving Frank Klopas options vs. Houston – April 12, 2013
http://www.mlssoccer.com/news/article/2013/04/12/healthy-competition-chi...
 
CHICAGO FIRE TEAM WRITER, JEFF CRANDALL FEATURES ON CHICAGO-FIRE.COM
 
Five things you should know about Sunday’s game vs. Houston Dynamo – April 14, 2013
http://www.chicago-fire.com/news/2013/04/five-things-should-know-about-s...
 
Patrick Nyarko’s return to health give Chicago Fire lineup conundrum – April 12, 2013
http://www.chicago-fire.com/news/2013/04/patrick-nyarkos-return-health-g...
 
Frank Klopas and Logan Pause talk difficulty of playing Houston Dynamo away – April 12, 2013
http://www.chicago-fire.com/news/2013/04/frank-klopas-and-logan-pause-ta...
 
All-In Podcast with Daniel Paladini – April 10, 2013
http://www.chicago-fire.com/podcast