Chicago Fire v DC United Round 1 Leg 1 Live

25 October 2007

Full 90 minutes as done live.
Chicago Starting Lineup: 18 - Matt Pickens (GK) 2 - C.J. Brown 7 - Logan Pause 8 - Diego Gutierrez 9 - Chad Barrett 10 - Cuauhtemoc Blanco 14 - Chris Armas 17 - Chris Rolfe 22 - Wilman Conde 25 - Gonzalo Segares 32 - Dasan Robinson. Substitutes 1 - Jon Busch (GK) 3 - Calen Carr 4 - Bakary Soumare 11 - John Thorrington 12 - Paulo Wanchope 31 - Floyd Franks 35 - Bruno Menezes
DC United Starting Lineup: 1 - Troy Perkins (GK) 4 - Marc Burch 6 - Greg Vanney 7 - Fred 10 - Christian Gomez 14 - Ben Olsen 16 - Brian Carroll 18 - Devon McTavish 19 - Clyde Simms 20 - Guy-Roland Kpene 26 - Bryan Namoff. Substitutes 22 - Jay Nolly (GK) 11 - Luciano Emilio 12 - Domenic Mediate 15 - Rod Dyachenko 21 - Stephen deRoux 32 - Bobby Boswell 99 - Jaime Moreno

Pregame Thoughts: As I said on the Major League Soccer Talk Podcast, I am not sure where Chicago are going to get goals from. However the lineup DC United has put out tonight really helps Chicago. The one thing Chicago needs is a quick goal, maybe two. Then they can bunker down and force DC into some forced substitutions. From there if Chicago can shut DC down in the midfield, they should be able to counter with some success. Let's hope the attendance is respectable.

First Half:
Pre-Kickoff...Smart move ESPN2, remind the rest of the world that the World Series is on. And very wise to have Davis and Wynalda in the booth tonight.
Minute 1: DC United kicks off. Barrett unable to hold onto the ball inside the penalty are and DC United Clear.
Minute 2: Blanco...just a bit offside (cue bad Bob Ucker references). Then decides to put the ball up the jumper (cue bad Rugby references) and DC United earn a free kick.
Minute 3: Blacno's bad pass gives DC United their first long spell of possession.
Minute 6: Brian Carroll gives Chicago the first free kick. Blanco takes it and DC puts it off the side netting for corner number 2. Was a poor corner from Blanco and he'll get a second chance. DC clear the second attempt.
Minute 9: Segares finds Wolff down the wing. Wolff does well to get in behind McTavish, and his shot is tipped over the bar by Perkins for a corner. Segaras gets two crosses in, but the second one gets caught up in the wind and out for a goal kick.
Minute 10: Cande dispossessed at the edge of DC United's attacking third. However Conde does well to fight for the ball and then a free kick after the foul by Kpene.
Minute 11: Blanco taken down by Carroll and earns a free kick. Played through the midfield but it comes to nothing when Olsen is is taken by Gutierrez. Some words ensue and Gutierrez is shown the yellow. Can't be getting stupid bookings like one for dissent.
Minute 13: Brian Carroll always going high on his shot.
Minute 16: Pickens has to save a mistake from the Chicago back four. DC gets a shot in but blocked and Chicago clear...for the moment.
Minute 17: Fred to Burch and his cross in ends up out for a goal kick. To the one who asked if I will be doing this for every playoff game. That is the plan as of right now. As long as games don't overlap.
Minute 18: Blanco should have done better and it should be 2-0 to Chicago. Perkins parries out and DC finally clear.
Minute 20: Olsen had a right idea to drive that shot through traffic, but mis hit that one and goes well wide of the far post.
Minute 22: Gomez tries a cheeky little flick on to goal picking the ball out of the air, but Pickens has no trouble with that one.
Minute 22: Blanco taken down by Brian Carroll. I don't know if it is yellow card worthy, but upon seeing the replay it was correct. Carroll was holding Blanco back and you just can't do that in front of the referee.
Minute 25: Game starting to get bogged down a little bit in the midfield. The pace though is just amazing.
Minute 26: Kpene with a cross in and Pickens just punches it out of the area. Off the throw in, Dasan Robinson gets the ball and then earns the Fire a throw in.
Minute 27: DC United with it's first spell of attack in this game, but a mix up gives Conde the ball and then a rash challenge gives Chicago a free kick.
Minute 30: Free kick to DC United. Birch goes far post but is cleared out. The shot in by Olsen is deflected and caught by Pickens.
Minute 32: Burch fouls Pause and Chicago gets a free kick in an interesting position, Blanco's ball in is cleared and Gomez on the break and his pass to Olsen is too heavy and Gutierrez's challenge was picture perfect and Chicago escape that one.
Minute 34: Armas does well to earn possess in the midfield, but the ball into Pause goes wide and Perkins is able to collect.
Minute 35: Free kick to DC United 10 yards in their attacking half. They keep possession but Robinson dispossess and is then promptly fouled. Wasted spell again from DC United.
Minute 37: The weather is starting to show in the quality on the park. It is getting very slippery.
Minute 39: DC finally switch play to Olsen. However the one-two being played back to him is hit with too much weight and out to touch for a Chicago throw-in.
Minute 41: Namoff concedes a corner kick to Chicago. Blanco to take and the ball in to the near post is out for a goal kick.
Minute 42: Fred goes for the volley and has it deflected out for a corner. Gomez takes and after a mad scramble, Chicago clear. DC Gets the ball back in, but DC is offside and it gives Chicago another free kick.
Minute 43: Free kick to DC United straight away, but blow it when Segares is rashly taken down.
Minute 45: Blanco loses it, gets it back, and then goes down to a Fred challenge. Free kick to Chicago on the edge of the penalty area. Into first half stoppage time. Segares in, Perkins punches out and Olsen clears.
Minute 45+1: Now Kpene is down but quickly gets back up. McTavish takes the free kick and Robinson clears it out for a corner. However before the corner can be taken, the first half whistle is blown.
First Half Thoughts: Well Chicago came out all guns a blazing and were justly rewarded with the goal. They had a golden chance through Blanco to get a second and he simply should have made it 2-0 to the Fire. DC though is starting to turn the screw a little bit but aren't getting any chances of true quality. The key for this second half is which side comes out and plays the opening fifteen minutes like the Fire did in the first half. If it isn't DC, I could see themselves going all attack the final half hour.

Second Half:
Pre-Second Half: Well it looks like DC United are not going to wait to make their first attacking substitution. Jamie Moreno is coming on in place of Guy-Roland Kpene.
Minute 46: Chicago kick off.
Minute 47: Barrett gets in behind McTavish and puts the ball where the three Fire players were not waiting. Perkins ends up getting the catch.
Minute 49: Segares fouls Gomez in a dangerous position for a DC United free kick. Gomez's free kick goes right off the wall and out for a throw. Danger averted when Olsen chests the ball out for a goal kick.
Minute 50: Moreno does well to make one man miss. He passes out wide and his centering ball goes all the way for a throw in.
Minute 51: Yellow Card CJ Brown. Kicks Gomez and then when Gomez gets up trades words. Looks like Brown may have said something to the man in the middle.
Minute 52: Simms fouls Blanco and a free kick awarded. Free kick goes out for a goal kick.
Minute 54: What a chippy start to the start of this second half. Conde finds Gutierrez then Blanco. Chicago move the ball back and Moreno ends up on the break. Fouled by Segares and DC United get a dangerous free kick...
Minute 56: Gomez to take from 32 yards out. Had power, but well wide of the far post. Goal kick to Chicago.
Minute 57: Nice challenge from Brown to save the ball down the wing. Chad Barrett down and DC put the ball into touch.
Minute 58: Christian Gomez goes offside. For all the possession they have had in the second half, have they had but only one half a chance?
Minute 59: Fred goes over the bar on a shot where he should have let the ball settle first.
Minute 60: This is a recording on Christian Gomez from minute 58.
Minute 61: Bryan Namoff picks the ball and out for a corner before Barrett can shoot. Blanco takes and doesn't get past the first defender. DC clear.
Minute 62-63: Fred goes down and it looked rather easily to me. Robinson didn't look to get much of Fred but the referee gives a free kick nonetheless. Gomez puts a shot right off the wall and McTavish can't keep the ball in and Chicago clear.
Minute 64: Chad Barrett off Calen Carr on. Speed speed speed. Can it kill on this wet night?
Minute 66: Getting only more physical the powder keg going to explode?
Minute 67: Fred out wide and his shot is blocked by Carr. The ball is played very long to Blanco and he ends up getting called for a very accidental hand ball. Gomez on the header going right to Pickens.
Minute 68: Blanco fouled yet again and with the way he's counting aloud the number of times he has been fouled, it should have been a yellow card for dissent.
Minute 69: And Gomez makes three...times he's been offside in this half. Calen Carr off the set piece and the high line bites DC in the backside. Carr's Thorrington esque chip doesn't miss by much.
Minute 70: Corner to DC United as CJ Brown gets to a cross in from Burch before Olsen can. Gomez to take and...
Minute 71: Gomez's corner blows by everyone going out well wide of the far post.
Minute 72: DC take a quick throw and Moreno is in acres of space...until he goes too wide and out on the byline for a Chicago goal kick.
Minute 75: DC United go on the counter and Armas fouls Fred and concedes a free kick. Olsen is taken down by Gutierrez and DC get another free kick...
Minute 76: Burch blows the free kick and Chicago clears...though they are still piling on the pressure.
Minute 77: The atmosphere is starting to show through the muted microphones. Blanco finds Carr and it should have been a penalty. Perkins makes the save but Carr was being held all the way into the box by Namoff. Now DC break with Moreno. Moreno finds Burch. Rolfe is fouled by Fred and again danger averted.
Minute 78: Luciano Emilio on for Brian Carroll. It's all hands forward now for DC...if they can get forward.
Minute 80: We see Chris Rolfe lose a contact that what technology has come to?
Minute 81: Blanco gets past Vanney and his cross cleared. Blanco is dispossessed this time by Simms but he tries to do too much and Chicago punt it forward. Olsen tries to keep the ball in and is unsuccessful. This is getting frantic now.
Minute 83: DC with possession, but not really doing much with it. You do realize you have to shoot to win?
Minute 84: Blanco with a takedown of McTavish that would have gotten him 2 points in amateur wrestling. Now Blanco is fouled by Vanney and gets another free kick.
Minute 85: Blanco off, and the man who put Chicago into the playoffs in John Thorrington comes on.
Minute 86: Armas fouled and Chicago get the free kick, Gutierrez plays the ball in and Perkins collects. DC get into the box but Moreno fouls Conde in the box. DC want nothing of it and are demanding a hand ball. The linesman comes on to discuss and the play it rightfully should have. In all that Moreno is booked for dissent.
Minute 89: Conde's ball in just too tall and Pause's cross is blocked for a throw in.
Minute 90: DC United finally get the ball back on a free kick. Fred to Gomez to Simms. Sims to Emilio to Burch and the ball goes to Simms who miss hits the ball and we have four more minutes in this one.
Minute 90+1: Gomez to Moreno...and just unable to get to it before going across the byline.
Minute 90+2: Burch switches to Olsen. The Fire are just doing everything they can to keep the ball out of the penalty area...
Minute 90+3: Free kick to DC. Namoff finds Emilio. Burch finds fred and GOES BACKWARDS. Vanney's ball in find Moreno and his cross is out for a throw. Olsen gets is in and it is cleared...One more minute!
Minute 90+4: Simms tries to switch play and it ends up out for a goal kick...Pickens kicks AND THAT IS IT!

Final Thoughts: Well DC had alot of the ball in the second half, but I seriously can't think of one serious chance they had on goal. They waited way too late to bring on Emilio and he didn't do much for DC either. Chicago though should be highly ticked off they were not given a penalty in the 77th Minute. That said, they had 2 legit chances for 2-0 and they simply didn't get it.
1-0 to the Fire right now probably helps DC United more. They get an extra week to get their players healthy and at home can get 2 goals. You would think though, the Fire would need 1 goal to ensure extra time and 2 goals to go onto the semi-finals.

Well I hope you have enjoyed this live blog tonight. Since the other three games are on Saturday and kicking off at either 7:30 or 8 Eastern, I will be focusing on the KC v Chivas USA game while trying to do the New York and New England game on delay sometime on Sunday.


Anonymous October 25, 2007 at 9:15 PM  

Just found the link at US Soccer Spot. Are you doing this for every game? Keep up the good stuff!

eplnfl October 25, 2007 at 11:00 PM  

This was BC's best life blog.

A certain guy from Chicago called this a 1-0 Fire victory.

I just hope the lack of a second score does not hurt the Fire in the long run. Stay tuned.

Early line on leg 2 1-1 draw and the Fire advance.

Hopefully,BC can blog the next one.

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Johnathan Starling, the self proclaimed 'most brutally honest man on the net, dishes out his own unique brand of opinions, and analysis on the Premier League, Bundesliga, and all things US Soccer.

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