The Fire come into Livestrong Sporting Park having won their last 4 league games, beating Houston, Montreal, Toronto, and Columbus. They've also won 7 of their last 8 dating back to the beginning of August, in all 8 of those games, the Fire have at least scored two goals. In the same stretch of times, KC has only scored 2 or more goals 3 times. Chris Rolfe is helping to lead the way for the Fire scoring 2 goals in their last game, a 3-1 win over Columbus. In the past two months they've climbed up the Eastern Conference and now find themselves trailing KC by only 2 points and they have a game in hand on KC.
KC has their own decent run of form lately, having been unbeaten in their last 8 games, although they've picked up fewer points than in their 7 game unbeaten run from earlier this season. While Chicago's picked up wins, KC has been having to settle for draws. While Chicago has scored at least 2 goals in every game since the beginning of August, KC hasn't allowed more than 1 goal by the opposition in that same stretch of time. Something will have to give when the two teams take the field tomorrow. Sporting will welcome back 2 players who did not play against Montreal last weekend. Roger Espinoza returns from his yellow card accumulation suspension, while Aurelien Collin returns after being rested on the weekend. Sporting will be without Jacob Peterson who picked up a red card after being subbed out against Montreal. His absence will likely push Graham Zusi back up to the forward position.
Myers - Collin - Besler - Sinovic
Cesar - Nagamura
Kamara - Sapong - Zusi
Number to Remember - 0 - That's the number of wins KC has against the Fire in the state of Kansas. In 3 years at CAB and 2 years at LSP KC has yet to defeat the Fire, combine that with one loss at BVDAC in the Open Cup, and KC is 0-3-4 in the Sunflower State against Chicago.
Key Match Up - Matt Besler vs Chris Rolfe - Rolfe is in form at the moment and has been a handful for teams to deal with since coming back into the league. Rolfe also hasn't made many friends in KC after he crawled back on the field in the team's last meeting to try and get the referee to stop play when he was injured. Besler seems the most likely candidate to match up with the Fire goal scorer.
PREDICTION - This is a must win for Sporting. If they want to finish at the top of the East, they can't drop any of the remaining 6 points at home, especially against the team that is only 2 points back. A loss and the Fire jump over KC while still having a game in hand. A draw and the Fire are a win away from jumping over KC, again with that game in hand. A win has to happen tomorrow. Anything else is 100% unacceptable. Can they take care of business? Absolutely, the Fire haven't shut a team out since they beat Vancouver at home back in the middle of July, their last road shut out, in Houston on July 3rd. So KC is going to get their chances, especially at home where they have been doing it all season. As long as the defense avoids the lapses that led to the Fire's goal the last time these two teams played KC can cool off the Fire.
SKC -2 (Kamara, Zusi)
CHI - 1 (Rolfe)