Fire Update: De Los Cobos set for more tinkering

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By ANTHONY ZILIS

After practice on Tuesday, Chicago Fire head coach Carlos de Los Cobos talked to his team at the center of the field for about 20 minutes.

His team is 0-3-2  in all combined games in May as it hits a crucial stretch of three home MLS games before the World Cup break.

De Los Cobos wanted to make sure his team is resting, eating right, but most importantly he wanted to make sure his team was focused.

“The players need to learn that they have the capacity of effort in every match. We are working hard in the field and some players are returning to training with us,” he said.

De Los Cobos will, once again, tinker with his lineup after an unsuccessful inaugural Sister Cities Tournament.

After commenting about the ineffectiveness of the pairing of forwards Collins John and Brian McBride last week in the Sister Cities Tournament at Toyota Park, de Los Cobos said he plans on starting the two Thursday against FC Dallas.

“We need to win,” de Los Cobos said when asked about starting the two. “We need to win this match and be aggressive, we have three matches consecutively at home, we need to think nine points.”

The Fire boss’s apprehension came from the fact that neither forward is able to penetrate with speed. He said he’ll fix this problem by pushing Nyarko up top at points.

Midfielder Mike Banner also gives de Los Cobos the speed and the ability to penetrate along the wings and looks to be cementing a starting spot after strong performances during the last two games.

“I feel pretty good right now, I’m getting my game fitness back, my game instinct,” Banner said.”I think they’ve been pleased with the progress I’ve been making.”

He’ll start Thursday unless his strained quad, which has him listed on the injury report as questionable, bothers him too much. Justin Mapp will get the nod If Banner isn’t able to go.

Logan Pause played on right back on Saturday but should return to a normal defensive midfield spot alongside Baggio Husidic on Thursday.

Don’t count out Pause completely from playing defense in the future. Midfielder John Thorrington will soon be back from injury and de Los Cobos hasn’t exactly shown confidence in the position, one Pause played early in his career.

Whatever the case, de Los Cobos knows Pause will play anywhere he wants him to.

“Logan is a very big professional. When I ask to him to help me play in this position because Dasan don’t feel good, he makes it very good,” he said. “For me it’s not a surprise because I know this player is very professional, has a very good personality, positive. For me it’s very good to have Logan.”

One glaring omission from de Los Cobos’s stated lineup was Marco Pappa. He was pegged for the midfield spot behind the forward, but with only four midfielders and Banner proving he needs to start on the left, it’s difficult to see where he fits in.

Still, with the Fire on the outside of the playoff picture looking in, it’ll be crucial not to slip any further during the home stretch before the break.

“Over the weekend we struggled to finish and we were kind of like Swiss cheese in the back. You take from it what you can,” Pause said.

“It’s kind of imperative (to get points before the World Cup break), but our focus right now is on Thursday night. You try to say, ‘win your games at home and draw on the road.’ We all know that with the parity in this league, just because we’re playing at home, we’re not given anything.”

Kosecki wants to play in Chicago

It’s tough to say an amusement park has ever been used as a tool for recruiting foreign players.

 But if Jakub Kosecki, son of Fire original Roman Kosecki, ever suits up in a Fire uniform, roller coasters may have just a little bit to do with it.

 “I remember the fun times with Six Flags and Soldier Field when my father was playing,” the baby-faced 19-year-old Kosecki said after his Legia Warsaw team beat the Fire 3-0 on Saturday.

Kosecki was named the top youth player in Poland last year and looks to be on his way up as a player. With the Fire looking for more attacking creativity, they may have their man in this Polish boy.

Kosecki is still small, but said he’s working on his physique and already is speedy and has enough technique to be an effective player. If Frank Klopas calls, Kosecki certainly would listen.

“It would be amazing, really amazing,” Kosecki said about playing in Chicago. “If they want me here, I will come here very happily. I will come play here because the best time of when I was a child was when I was in Chicago.”

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60 Responses to Fire Update: De Los Cobos set for more tinkering

  1. Connor B says:

    Who didn’t see this coming. Tried to tell the Fire fans they were idiots calling for Hamlett’s head after two straight Eastern Conference Final appearances. Did you really think you’d improve?

    Reminds me of Metro fans calling for Bradley’s head a while back….sometimes fans do not know what’s best.

  2. John says:

    That’s true, but I think you have to contribute part of it to Blanco’s departure as well. He may be old and overweight, but he is great with the ball.

  3. Second City says:

    Fire are a mess. The End.

    Welcome to reality , my fellow Fire fans.

    How’s that failed attempt to discredit what I was saying since last off-season and the start of the season going for our Club?

    Firing Hamlett was the wrong move and De Los Cobos is the wrong manager. ” Tinkering ” with the line-up again? Yea, awesome hire and great signings on his part, btw.

    Ah well. At least we’re not DC….I guess.

  4. Front Row says:

    I would be happy if the Fire would just learn how to trap the ball properly. Passing is weak too. I would agree with Connor that Hamlett did have some success, but how uninspired the Fire played in the Semi-finals showed how Hamlett had lost the ability to motivate players. It seemed the Fire never were the same after the infamous locker room altercation.

  5. AKDN says:

    This is sad.

  6. Polish Wonder says:

    It really is. It feels like I am watching some other team.

  7. Happy Camper says:

    Tough crowd. Particularly considering that

    i. this is the first year of CdlC
    ii. the stadium has always been empty
    iii. Blanco was not replaced by anybody of his stature

    spend some dough on players instead of feeling sorry for yourselves.

    HC

  8. AKDN says:

    It is not our team.

    Dykstra is a joke. We haven’t bothered to sign another DP. De Los Cobos has changed our style of play to… god knows what.

  9. Nathanael Greene says:

    These Thursday night games typically have poor attendance. I dream of seeing the atmosphere of Seattle and Toronto all across the league.

  10. AKDN says:

    Mike Banner takes a free kick?

    What in the world is wrong with this team.

  11. AKDN says:

    omg come on look before you pass

    we have no passing ability

  12. Brian S says:

    Chicago’s defense is horrid tonight. Justin Mapp is playing like he wants to be starting consistently again. He has looked very confident with the ball

  13. Nathanael Greene says:

    How did Banner miss!?! He couldn’t do that again if he wanted.

  14. Brian S says:

    Mapp should slap Banner in the face after that miss

  15. AKDN says:

    I am absolutely embarrassed to call myself a Chicago Fire fan right now.

    What a joke this team has become. I expect so much more than this. What is our defense doing? MARK SOMEBODY.

  16. AKDN says:

    OMG BANNER

    1. You miss from 5 feet outside.

    2. YOU HIT A SHOT BACKWARDS

  17. dbag says:

    Please put Brian on the WC roster. Its not June 1st yet

  18. AKDN says:

    Mapp and McBride are the only two people who deserve to be playing right now.

  19. Brian S says:

    First half analysis:

    1) Mapp and Mcbride co-players of the game
    2) Everyone else sucks
    3) The End!

  20. AKDN says:

    WHAT IN THE WORLD

    he just subs out our best player?!?!

  21. Brian S says:

    That sub makes no sense. Mapp was the best player on the field

  22. AKDN says:

    De Los Cobos needs to go. I didn’t even know about that.

    He doesn’t freaking tell his players who is starting until the game starts?

  23. Brian S says:

    De los Cobos decided that he doesn’t like winning

  24. Brian S says:

    Apparently you and I are the only two in SBI universe watching this game

  25. AKDN says:

    That is the only plausible explanation.

    It’s illogical.

  26. AKDN says:

    I wouldn’t want to watch us either lol

  27. Brian S says:

    It’s amazing that sense the substitution, all movement forward has stalled

  28. AKDN says:

    It’s too frustrating for me to watch and know that the team playing is not even close to the best team we can field.

  29. AKDN says:

    Yeah.

    He took out the midfield maestro and put in a holding forward.

  30. Brian S says:

    I’ll be happy with a point here. I’m glad Cunningham wasn’t on his “A” game tonight or else it could’ve been ugly

  31. AKDN says:

    I understand wanting to get out of here with a point, but I want the win.

  32. Brian S says:

    True. I would love a W but they have lost all motivation it seems like

  33. Never First says:

    It’s unfortunate that the linesmen have had such a major influence on this match.

  34. AKDN says:

    The one player that was really providing any energy was Mapp, and he was inexplicably subbed out.

  35. Brian S says:

    What I really hate about that is that he wont have to answer to anybody about that either. If he did that in Europe, he would be crucified. I can’t wait till the sport reaches that point here in America where the coaches have to worry about media scrutiny

  36. AKDN says:

    The 100 year old man is working harder than any of the “young” guys.

  37. AKDN says:

    Collins John is a joke.

    He needs to shut up and DO SOMETHING

  38. Brian S says:

    World class professional!

  39. AKDN says:

    John’s first touch is really poor.

  40. AKDN says:

    And a class act at that. The world needs more Brian McBrides.

  41. Brian S says:

    Not a world class professional!

  42. Brian S says:

    Without a doubt

  43. AKDN says:

    HOW DO YOU MISS THAT

  44. AKDN says:

    Haha, I like the symmetry in the comments from here and above.

  45. AKDN says:

    I for one am glad that we have McBride and Mapp.

    We would have no hope without them.

  46. Brian S says:

    Thank you for noticing : )

  47. Brian S says:

    It was a good 60 minutes

  48. Clayton says:

    FCD looked pretty good for the last 30. Too bad Dax got injured and Cunningham needs a partner up top. 1 vs. 4 … c’mon Schellas. Heath playing right forward, uh … And Bruno Guarda are you joking me – where the hell is Avila!!??

    And the linesman got BOTH of the offsides calls dead wrong … the camera doesn’t lie.

    Another tie for FCD – not good enough.

  49. The Soccer Sage says:

    I’ve been a big fan of Justin Mapp since his days on the U-17 National Team, but too often he seems to drift out of matches. Tonight he was strong, yet he was substituted. Dave Sarachan once told me he thought Mapp would be a stalwart on the USMNT, and though that looks unlikely, the Fire must do a better job of showcasing his abilities.

  50. Deano says:

    Please kidnap McBride and put him in SA. He has more goals then the forwards minus Altidore have caps.

  51. Front Row says:

    Either the Fire is just that bad or Mapp has improved his play. Conde and Nyarko had a few nice moments. McBride is trying. There seems to be a lack of organization to the team. Players are poorly predicting each others’ moves. Many passes went to spots where no one was or moving to. De Los Cobos appears to have less direction or planning than Osorio prior to acquiring Blanco.

  52. Chicago - Scott says:

    you kidding me? I think the point is that we WANT them to spend money on getting us a new DP.

  53. Chicago - Scott says:

    We need a new DP, quick.

  54. madmax says:

    Coach, first start with what you can do. Collins John is a waste, the European Landin. See if you can dump him now not later. That would be a good start.

  55. Pete says:

    The Fire are a mess.
    a) “from the frying pan, into the fire”: they got rid of Hamlett, a solid coach who wasn’t afraid to bench talent when necessary
    b) amidst a rebuilding phase, they cast off their reliable keeper Busch for an inexperienced guy, proving nothing short of disastrous
    c) CdlC should be .500 at worst with the talent he has.

    For a team a shootout away from the title game 7 months ago to this …

  56. inkedAG says:

    I bet you all want Juan Carlos Osorio now!! HAHAHA

  57. Second City says:

    link to myspace.com

    ^^^

    Speaking of… ” HAHAHA “.