Real Salt Lake at Chicago Fire: Your Running Commentary

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A 2009 conference final rematch is on tap Thursday night as Real Salt Lake and the Chicago Fire meet at Toyota Park (9:30 p.m., ESPN2/ESPN Deportes).

The two teams went to a penalty shootout in the playoffs last year, with Nick Rimando coming up big to eliminate the Fire and lift Salt Lake to the final.

He'll be in net again for Salt Lake, which is riding a nine-game unbeaten streak. Chicago, meanwhile, is looking for a boost to stay alive in the Eastern Conference race, but it will have to pull the upset without Patrick Nyarko and Brian McBride, who are both expected to miss the match with injuries.

If you will be watching the match, please feel free to share any thoughts, opinions and play-by-play in the comments section below. Enjoy the game!

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60 Responses to Real Salt Lake at Chicago Fire: Your Running Commentary

  1. Smirking Kitten says:

    Brian McBride = legend.

  2. Smirking Kitten says:

    …so it is too bad he is on the bench. Damn.

  3. Will Smith says:

    Hey, I am legend!

  4. jts says:

    Hi.

    Watching my first Fire game this year.

    Pappa has single-handledly destroyed about 6 offensive runs. It is really difficult to see how he has beat out any PDL players available.

    Sorry, Fire.

  5. Paul Dickov says:

    Robbie Findley’s first touch makes baby Jesus cry…

  6. jts says:

    Findley learned something about diving in SA

  7. Loonarie says:

    Stefan is the only healthy striker we have.

    Patrick has a concussion, and Brian is hurting.

    Carr is only running in practice, and nowhere close to ready. Rolfe left the country and everyone Frank wants to sign is playing until August. We are starting a kid that has never played a MLS game and we had to move Conde to the midfield. We are nervous.

  8. will m. says:

    shouldn’t you be at the game if you’re on the team?

  9. Adriano says:

    Thankfully Findley sucks!

    De Los Cobos has destroyed us!

  10. jts says:

    I can appreciate someone not playing with other players of equal skill, but most of Pappa’s give-aways have been 1v1 and clumsy and just not very skilled

    PS. Findley shows that fantastic 1 v keeper touch we all came to appreciate from SA

  11. Stephen says:

    What’s wrong with Beckerman?

  12. jts says:

    He was in the locker room watching Lebron

  13. BooThisMan says:

    Findley by repeatedly coughing it up to a patchwork MLS defense and blowing a 1v1 against a rookie MLS keeper proving once again that he had no business being in SA, much less starting three games for us.

    I will give him credit for a nice dive and well-taken penalty, though.

  14. ... says:

    Some foot injury. I’m not sure exactly what but he’s been out a while now. Since May I think.

  15. Stephen says:

    Oh. Well, I haven’t watched much MLS this season. But that’s a disappoinment, I like him.

  16. Adriano says:

    Screw you De Los Cobos.

    You screwed my team.

  17. Brian S. says:

    Marco Pappa is Salt Lake’s best player tonight

  18. Brian S. says:

    I’m so sick of reading the “Breaking News” ticker at the bottom.

  19. Eric says:

    Steve Kinney looks like he has good potential as a right back for Chicago though.

  20. jts says:

    Agree- he has been decent.

  21. Eric says:

    At the very least, I like the look of him at right back more than I do Dasan Robinson right now.

    I’d also like to see Corbin bone get in this game, preferably for Mike Banner.

  22. jts says:

    First half both teams tried to possess and had a lot of first touch issues.

    Second half has been a little more MLS like, with long balls from the back line by-passing the midfield up to the forwards to fight for 50-50 balls

  23. Brian S. says:

    Justin Mapp is certainly trying to spark this attack

  24. attenborough says:

    Dumb.

  25. attenborough says:

    Anyone know CDLC isn’t giving Bone more time? I’ve been MIA since the World Cup started, and I know he was hurt at the beginning of the campaign, but still…with as much talent as we have we’re looking like the Cubs.

  26. jts says:

    Pappa with a nice shot from one side across the box and out the other side. That was not a cross.

  27. Brian S. says:

    I’m very pleased with the crowd tonight. Good attendance and seems like a great atmosphere. Too bad Salt Lake has decided not to play offense anymore

  28. jts says:

    Pappa actually connected on a decent pass, which Banner wisely held up so he could take on 3 instead of 1 defender.

    Them McHead misses a header he usually hits blind folded.

    Fortunately RSL has littleinterest in the game (or the humidity)

  29. Eric says:

    Kinney has definitally been impressive tonight for my money.

    The fire are really lacking a good playmaker in the middle, similar to Morales for RSL, and someone to partner McBride up top.

  30. jts says:

    Agree- he has been energetic and had some influence…as you pointed out about 15 minutes before the announcers

    True in the middle- nobody moves or shows for the ball in the center of the field

  31. jts says:

    How about the Tetris music from the crowd

  32. Beandog says:

    Do MLS refs know what a dive is? I’ve never seen them call one.

  33. jts says:

    Apparently Lebron James is going to play basketball in Miami. Who knew?

  34. Brian S. says:

    It’s gonna be an absolute shame if Chicago can’t get a point out of this game. They’ve dominated this second half

  35. jts says:

    And, tyring to preserve the 1-0 loss, Chicago substitutes in the 86th minute

  36. Eric says:

    They were critical of Husidic and I agree he didn’t have an impressive performance today but I would argue that it’s because he’s playing out of position for the fire. Husidic strikes me as the player who shouldn’t play as that attacking mid high up the field like he seems to for them. He seems to be a player who is better sitting deeper in the midfield and controlling the pace of play for chicago.

  37. jts says:

    Banner, again not content to take the man on 1v1, opts to turn into 2 other defenders so as to create the advantageous 1v3

  38. jts says:

    RSL played a most disinterested second half. Chicago had every chance to get points tonight.

  39. Brian S. says:

    I feel about Lebron right now the way soccer haters must feel about the World Cup. I am starting to despise having him jammed down my throat

  40. Brian S. says:

    That sounds really gross and not very parent friendly

  41. jts says:

    Apparently Wade says, “It’s going to be crazy”

  42. attenborough says:

    First Fire game in a month I’ve seen and I’m already comfortable throwing in the towel. Last year we’d give up an early pk or two and come back to salvage a point. That underachievement makes this year’s look embarrassing.

  43. MikeR says:

    Would you just knock it off? The Fire don’t have the personnel to be successful this year. That is only marginally the fault of de los Cobos. Blame Klopas. Maybe Frankie can find him a forward capable of scoring a goal. So far, 4 goals for strikers, 14 games. Guus Hiddink couldn’t win with this Fire team.

  44. MikeR says:

    The problem is that he’s one of only a couple of guys on the team who’s shown the ability to score a goal. It’s hard to put him back farther when the only other chance of a goal is a shot from distance by Pappa.

  45. Juan Carlos Osorio says:

    I AM READY TO RETURN, CHICAGO! YOUR FAVORITE COACH IS HEADING TO THE AIRPORT. I have a 7-3-0 formation that you will love!!!!

  46. Chodilicus says:

    I understand that the humidity is terrible in Chicago as I was there a couple of weeks ago and played golf in mid-90s weather with the humidity. With that said, as an RSL supporter I was embarrassed with how defensive they played in the second half. I was also embarrassed with some of the embelleshment and time wasting tactics. That stuff is just not needed in soccer.

    I actually think that most of the incidents were fouls as the Chicago players were clearly frustrated that they couldn’t get the ball back from Morales or Espindola. However, having your jersey tugged a little or taking a slight elbow to the ribs should not have you rolling on the ground for a minute.

    I also do not think there is room for blatant stalling. If you want to slow down the game then control the ball through passing and good possession soccer. Usually RSL is the best in MLS at doing this and plays very attractive attacking soccer. However, I was disappointed in the effort and style tonight. They disrespected the game in my opinion despite getting the result.

  47. ShaggyReAL says:

    I’ll take the 3 points and say thanks!!

  48. Wolf says:

    I turned on the game in the second half planning to watch a soccer game. I still haven’t figured out what to call it but it was NOT soccer. That was an appalling display by what is suppose to be professional soccer. Maybe I am tainted after a month of WC soccer but even the worst teams at the WC finals played far better than those two teams tonight.

  49. will m. says:

    dumber.

  50. ericJ says:

    Not to belittle your point (I agree with it to an extent that doesnt reach your own exageration), but to say that teams at the world cup playing in the games of their lives played better than MLS teams in a regular season match is not exactly breaking news.

  51. rob says:

    Is it just me or did Justin Mapp look decent out there?

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  53. Vince Clortho says:

    1 good half for each team…I’m an RSL fan and I hate Espindola’s extracurricular activity and histrionics. Glad the CHI fans got a decent showing from their team in the second half.

  54. chupacabra says:

    It’s too bad I misplaced my pair of pointed sticks because poking my eyes out would have been more fun that watching that match.

  55. chupacabra says:

    That’s what happens when you watch a bunch of square pegs and blockheads.

  56. Josh D says:

    Mapp is a great player when he wants to be. The problem is “when he wants to be.”

  57. SeattleStan says:

    That’s if you don’t get tabbed in your dream job as the new USMNT coach.

  58. Matt says:

    I think you should look up the definition of disinterest.

  59. DJ says:

    A “decent showing” would have been a draw, at minimum. This was not a decent showing.

  60. Juan Carlos Osorio says:

    Hmmm. Jozy Atlidore at left back. Carlos Bocanegra uptop in a 6-3-1. Hmmmm.