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Chicago Fire vs. Toronto FC | 2018 MLS Match Preview

Chicago Fire vs. Toronto FC
2018 MLS Regular Season — Week 21

Toyota Park — Bridgeview
July 21 - 7 pm ET

WATCH: TSN 1/4, ESPN+

Two teams coming off midweek cup competition victories square off at Toyota Park Saturday night as the Chicago Fire, fresh off a 4-0 victory over Louisville City FC in the U.S. Open Cup quarterfinals, host a Toronto FC side that knocked off Ottawa Fury FC, 1-0, in the opening leg of the Canadian Championship semifinals.

This is the second meeting this season, with the teams playing to a 2-2 draw at BMO Field on April 28. Jonathan Osorio and Victor Vazquez gave TFC a 2-0 lead after 22 minutes, but Bastian Schweinsteiger pulled the visitors to within a goal in the 69th minute and Alan Gordon leveled deep in second-half stoppage time.

Chicago Fire

For the second time in three years, Chicago (6-10-5) reached the USOC semifinals, easily defeating Louisville City, 4-0, at Toyota Park on Wednesday.

Nemanja Nikolic opened the scoring in the 16th minute, with a glancing header off a Aleksandar Katai cross and then Katai doubled the lead in the 32nd minute on a terrific individual effort. Diego Campos and Elliot Collier tacked on late goals as Louisville City finished with nine men.

“In the Open Cup, obviously you don’t have a second chance so I think there was a little more urgency in this game and a little bit more focus,” Veljko Paunovic said. “We are going to use this game as a good reference how to play every single game, not only in the Open Cup, but in our league.”

  • Suspended: D - Drew Conner
  • Suspended after next caution: D - Kevin Ellis
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: M - Djordje Mihailovic (right ACL surgery), F - Michael de Leeuw (left ACL surgery), D - Matt Polster (MCL surgery), GK - Patrick McLain (hamstring injury), F - Luis Solignac (left quad injury), D - Grant Lillard (right quad injury), D - Kevin Ellis (left calf contusion), D - Rafael Ramos (left ankle injury)

Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1, right to left)
GK: Richard Sanchez — Elliot Collier, Johan Kappelhof, Jonathan Campbell, Jorge Corrales — Dax McCarty, Brandt Bronico — Diego Campos, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Aleksandar Katai — Nemanja Nikolic

Toronto FC

Toronto FC (4-11-4) opened up defense of their Canadian Championship title in the right way Wednesday night, defeating the Ottawa Fury, 1-0, at TD Place Stadium in the opening leg of their semifinal series.

Osorio scored the game’s lone goal in the 5th minute, with a low shot that snuck inside the near post. The critical away goal puts the Reds firmly in the driver’s seat with the second leg set for BMO Field in a week’s time.

“For us, we met our objective for the night. Last year, we came here and didn’t get the result we were looking for. Tonight we came, we got a shutout, got the away goal,” Greg Vanney said. “We’re leaving pleased, we set ourselves up with a position to try and finish the series at home next week. From that standpoint, we’re pleased.”

  • Suspended: None
  • Suspended after next caution: None
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: F - Jozy Altidore (foot surgery), D - Drew Moor (quadricep strain), D - Chris Mavinga (hamstring strain), GK - Caleb Patterson-Sewell (elbow injury), D - Auro (hamstring strain), D - Jason Hernandez (hamstring strain), M - Victor Vazquez (knee injury)

Projected Starting XI
(3-5-2, right to left)
GK: Alex Bono — Eriq Zavaleta, Nick Hagglund, Justin Morrow — Nicolas Hasler, Marky Delgado, Jonathan Osorio, Michael Bradley, Ryan Telfer — Jordan Hamilton, Sebastian Giovinco

All-Time Series

  • Overall: Chicago Fire 9 wins, 41 goals … Toronto FC 9 wins, 42 goals … 8 draws
  • At Chicago: Fire 5 wins, 17 goals … Toronto FC 2 wins, 14 goals … 5 draws
  • Last meeting at Chicago: Chicago Fire 1, Toronto FC 3 (Aug. 19, 2017)

Officials

Referee: Sorin Stoica
Assistant Referees: Jason White, Peter Balciunas
4th Official: Rubiel Vazquez
VAR: Armando Villarreal

Read More

Current Form

Chicago
D
D
W
L
L
L
Toronto FC
D
L
L
L
D
L

Season Stats

Chicago Fire FCToronto FC
21Games Played19
6Wins4
10Losses11
5Draws4
33Goals30
41Goals Conceded38
172Shots221
91Shots on Target103
230Fouls committed156
199Fouls suffered206
52Offside40
92Corners96

Goals Scored

01234+TotalAvg
CHI28830331.6
TOR54541301.6
01234+Avg
CHI143301.7
TOR312211.7
01234+Avg
CHI145001.4
TOR233201.5

Goals Conceded

01234+TotalAvg
CHI26652412
TOR25723382
01234+Avg
CHI233121.8
TOR143011.6
01234+Avg
CHI033402.1
TOR114222.4
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