If the Chicago Fire can earn a fourth straight shutout today when Sporting Kansas City travel to Soldier Field (5:00 p.m. CT, WGN-TV and CF97 Live), it would be the first time the club has posted four consecutive clean sheets. since July 2009.
Goalkeeper Gabriel Slonina is questionable for today’s game after rolling his ankle against DC United but is expected to play today. If the Fire can keep SKC off the scoresheet, Gaga would become the first goaltender in MLS history to start a season with four consecutive clean sheets. If Gaga continues at this rate, he could break the MLS record for clean sheets in one season – 16 – broken in 2000 by Tony Meola, while he was in Kansas City.
Captain Rafael Czichos is also listed as questionable. He and Wyatt ‘Sushi’ Omsberg have been stellar this season as a centre-back partnership – working to ensure Slonina has faced just eight shots in total this season, which is the third-fewest in MLS .
But Fire head coach Ezra Hendrickson, who picked up his first career win last week at DC, knows today won’t be easy.
“Well, knowing Peter [Vermes], they’re going to be angry, aggressive,” Hendrickson said this week. “The start of the season hasn’t gone very well for them, so I’m sure he’ll inspire them to come here and steal points from us.”
The Fire offense started to wake up a bit last weekend, with Stanislav Ivanov and Jonathan Bornstein scoring the team’s first two goals of 2022. We’re still awaiting goals from new attacking signings Kacper Przybylko and Xherdan Shaqiri , However. Shaqiri, for his part, is tied for third in chances created (11) in the league, behind Luciano Acosta (13) and Lucas Zelarayan (13).
There’s no official word on ticket sales for today’s match, but don’t expect it to break the 25,000 mark we saw for the opener at home against Orlando City. First, the weather is cold and rainy, and second, it’s typical in MLS to see attendance drop a bit after a home opener. But, we hear there could be a giant crowd brewing when LA Galaxy visits Soldier Field on April 16.
How to watch
Tyler Terens and Tony Meola are back on call this season, and Arlo White will join them over the summer. All locally streamed games will stream on WGN-TV and the new CF97 Live, which is a free streaming option on Fire’s website and mobile app. Fans living outside the Chicago TV market can watch on ESPN+.
Chicago Fire vs. Sporting Kansas City
MLS Match #4 | Saturday March 19 | Soldier Field, Chicago
Kick-off: 5:00 p.m.
Streaming: CF97 Live (available free to Chicago-area fans at ChicagoFireFC.com and on the Chicago Fire app)
Out-of-market streaming: ESPN+
Broadcast Team: Tyler Terens (play-by-play), Tony Meola (color analyst)
Radio: TUDN 1200AM
Live Twitter updates: @HotTimeOldTown
Chicago Fire Injury Report
- OUTSIDE: Carlos Terán (right thigh)
- OUTSIDE: Andre Reynolds II (left thigh)
- QUESTIONABLE: Victor Bezerra (right shoulder)
- QUESTIONABLE: Rafael Czichos (left foot)
- QUESTIONABLE: Gaga Slonina (left ankle)
Sporting Kansas City injury report
- OUTSIDE: Gadi Kinda (knee surgery)
- OUTSIDE: Alan Pulido (knee surgery)
- OUTSIDE: Jose Mauri (unavailable)
- QUESTIONABLE: Uri Rosell (hamstrings)
- QUESTIONABLE: Khiry Shelton (calf)
- QUESTIONABLE: Johnny Russell (hamstrings)
- QUESTIONABLE: Daniel Salloi (calf)
Calendar of upcoming fires in Chicago
saturday april 2 – Chicago Fire vs. FC DallasSoldier Field, Chicago (2:30 p.m. CT, Univision)
saturday april 9 – City of Orlando vs. Chicago Fire at Exploria Stadium, Orlando, FL (Noon CT, Univision)
saturday april 16 – Chicago Fire vs. The Galaxy at Soldier Field. Chicago (7 p.m. CT, WGN-TV and CF97 Live)
Saturday April 23 – Minnesota United vs. Chicago Fire at Allianz Field, St. Paul. MN (4 p.m. CT, ESPN)