The Chicago Fire's season has boiled down to six regular-season matches and a playoff picture that just about is burnt to a crisp.
It could be argued that the Fire's current winless stretch (0-4-3) tops the organization's all-time woeful list, and they'll attempt to put an end to their drought Wednesday, when they travel to Santa Clara, Calif., to face the San Jose Earthquakes.
The seven-match winless skid is the second worst among the Fire's 13 seasons, following only a nine-game winless stretch in 2004 -- the only season the Fire missed the postseason.
Their four-game stretch without a goal is the longest in team history. Chicago's last goal was Collins John's 88th-minute free kick during a 1-1 draw against the Los Angeles Galaxy on Sept. 4. That briefly gave Chicago the lead until Galaxy defender Omar Gonzalez headed in the game-tying goal in second-half stoppage time off of a Landon Donovan free kick.
For the season, Chicago's scoring average (1.17) currently is the second-lowest behind only the 2007 season (1.03 average). And the Fire's minus-4 goal differential is third-worst behind the 2004 (minus-8) and 2007 (minus-5) teams.
Despite their slump, Fire players at face value are maintaining a positive tone, even if their self synopsis can be disputed.
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