MX23RW : Wednesday, June 23 06:26:36| >> :120:70210:70210:
May 8, 2021 at 6pm UK at Soldier Field
Chicago FireChicago Fire
0-2
PhiladelphiaPhiladelphia Union

Kappelhof (26'), Omsberg (48'), Sekulic (90+2')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Burke (51'), Glesnes (60')
Monteiro (90+2'), Bedoya (90+6'), Glesnes (90+7')

Preview: Chicago Fire vs. Philadelphia Union - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Major League Soccer clash between Chicago Fire and Philadelphia Union, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

A pair of MLS teams will search for their first win of the regular season when the Chicago Fire play host to the Philadelphia Union at Soldier Field on Saturday.

After drawing their opening games, both sides are looking to end their two-game losing streaks heading into this match.


Match preview

Chicago Fire head coach Raphael Wicky looks on during the first half against the New York City at Red Bull Arena in August 2020© Reuters

The Fire have been slow out of the gates, once again failing to earn more than a point in their first three games, which is exactly how this team started their 2020 campaign.

Raphael Wicky and his team will be happy to return to Soldier Field as they have struggled to get three points away from home.

If you take away the "MLS is Back" tournament last season, Chicago have not won on the road since their regular-season finale in 2019, when they beat Orlando 5-2.

While they have had more success playing in the windy city, they have not won at Soldier Field in their last four regular-season games, including a 2-2 draw in their opening match against the New England Revolution.

However, the last time they hosted Philadelphia, they did come away with a 2-0 win back in 2019 in a match played at SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview, Illinois.

Philadelphia Union head coach Jim Curtin pictured in September 2020© Reuters

It may be a surprise to see the Union without a win in three games, but it is not unusual given how they have begun their past two campaigns in MLS.

In 2019 and 2020, they were winless in their three opening games but recovered each time, finishing first overall in the 2020 regular season.

So far in 2021, we have seen two very different Philly teams who have achieved very different results in MLS and the CONCACAF Champions League.

Jim Curtin will hope to see the same team that look unbeatable in the Champions League show up again on Saturday.

The Union advanced to the semi-finals of that competition on Tuesday, beating Atlanta United 4-1 on aggregate, and are unbeaten in their last four Champions League matches, scoring nine goals and conceding only one.

Chicago Fire Major League Soccer form:
  • D
  • L
  • L

Philadelphia Union Major League Soccer form:
  • D
  • L
  • L

Philadelphia Union form (all competitions):
  • W
  • D
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • D



Team News

Kai Wagner in action for Philadelphia Union in October 2019© Reuters

It will be a while before Fire fans see winger Stanislav Ivanov, who will not be available until this summer after undergoing knee surgery late last month.

Left-back Miguel Navarro could miss his third straight game with an ankle injury.

Fabian Herbers has a torn collateral ligament and will not be playing, nor will centre-back Carlos Teran, who is nursing a hamstring injury.

Striker Elliot Collier is a possibility to return from an ankle injury.

Union midfielder Jack de Vries has a concussion, and midfielder Jose Martinez is suspended after earning a straight red card 16 minutes into their match with New York FC last weekend.

Polish striker Kacper Przybylko will look for his first goal of the regular season on Saturday, having scored five times in the Champions League and leading this team in scoring over their past two MLS campaigns.

Chicago Fire possible starting lineup:
Shuttleworth; Bornstein, Calvo, Kappelhof, Sekulic; Pineda, Gimenez; Medran, Stojanovic, Frankowski; Beric

Philadelphia Union possible starting lineup:
Blake; Mbaizo, Glesnes, Elliot, Wagner; Sullivan, Bedoya, Monteiro, Fontana; Przybylko, Santos


SM words green background

We say: Chicago Fire 0-2 Philadelphia Union

These teams may be level on points so far this season, but the Union have shown signs they can turn things around, especially with their strong performances in the Champions League.

So far in 2021, the Fire have shown they lack depth, relying almost exclusively on Robert Beric and Luka Stojanovic to create chances, which will make the game plan for Jim Curtin pretty simple.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data


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Tables

Eastern Conference

TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1New England RevolutionNew England9621149520
2Orlando City95311661018
3Philadelphia UnionPhiladelphia9432117415
4Columbus Crew842296314
5New York Red BullsNY Red Bulls84041210212
6DC United9405911-212
7New York City FCNY City83231510511
8Atlanta UnitedAtlanta8251119211
9CF MontrealMontreal8323109111
10Nashville SCNashville825198111
11Inter MiamiInter Miami9225814-68
12Toronto81251015-55
13Chicago Fire8116413-94
14FC CincinnatiCincinnati7115617-114

Western Conference

TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1New England RevolutionNew England9621149520
2Orlando City95311661018
3Philadelphia UnionPhiladelphia9432117415
4Columbus Crew842296314
5New York Red BullsNY Red Bulls84041210212
6DC United9405911-212
7New York City FCNY City83231510511
8Atlanta UnitedAtlanta8251119211
9CF MontrealMontreal8323109111
10Nashville SCNashville825198111
11Inter MiamiInter Miami9225814-68
12Toronto81251015-55
13Chicago Fire8116413-94
14FC CincinnatiCincinnati7115617-114

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