MLS News: Prediction: Chicago Fire vs DC United

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Verdict: Chicago Fire wins

Best odds: 11/10

Bookmaker: Unibet

Two teams looking to return to midweek victory immediately, Chicago Fire will host DC United in the early hours of Thursday.

Chicago Fire

Starting with the hosts, while Chicago may have found itself enjoying a stellar purple patch when it headed back in July, The Fire came crashing back to earth last weekend. Failing to take advantage of the 3-1 and 3-0 wins over Orlando and Atlanta earlier this month, head coach Raphaël Wicky saw his side fielding what was Sunday’s worst performance of the season. Eventually wiped out in Nashville SC, they were hit with a 5-1 on battery and still find themselves knocking him out at the foot of the Eastern Conference. Knowing they are still referred to as an outsider cry for a place in the Final Series this year, Chicago will be delighted to be returning home midweek. Last seen at Soldier Field racking up those eye-catching streak wins, the hosts on Thursday picked up seven points from their last three MLS matches at home. Most impressively, Wicky’s team scored over 2.5 goals in each of these three games.

Team news

Having finally gotten over a long-term knee problem, Stanislav Ivanov may be in line to make his Chicago debut midweek.

However, the duo of Carlos Teran and goalkeeper Kenneth Kronholm are expected to miss Thursday.

DC United

As for the visitors, DC United make the trip to Soldier Field sitting in a very similar position to their midweek opponents. Despite scoring what was a real turning point in a stunning 7-1 against Toronto at home earlier in the month, Hernán Losada’s side failed to keep up the momentum last time around. Ultimately struck by what was a well-deserved 2-1 away defeat to Philadelphia Union, the Black-and-Reds are another team found out of the Final Series seats in the Eastern Conference. Earning a reputation from across the MLS this season for their inconsistencies, their new boss will have a headache from his team’s constant struggles on the road. The Washington team have only registered one point behind Audi Field in their last three attempts, a streak that includes consecutive losses to Philadelphia and New York City. However, despite their away troubles, it should be noted that Thursday’s hosts scored a 1-0 win last time they faced Chicago in May.

Team news

Donovan Pines and Paul Arriola will miss Thursday as both are away with the United States for Gold Cup engagements.

Making his first appearance in nearly a year last weekend, defender Steve Birnbaum is expected to keep his spot midweek.

Key factors to consider

  • When Thursday’s opponents last met in May, DC United won 1-0 at home.
  • However, DC have only won one of seven MLS away games this season, five defeats and one draw.
  • Five of their previous six fights outside Audi Field have seen over 2.5 goals on the final whistle.
  • Similarly, Chicago’s last four MLS games have seen 19 goals.
  • The Fire have collected seven points in their last three home games.

Conclusion

Putting in what was a sad performance in Nashville over the weekend, there’s no doubt Chicago will be happy to make a home soil return here. Despite being impressed with that 1-0 defeat when they faced the visitors on Thursday in May, they continued to impress at Soldier Field. Last seen at home, scoring 3-0 and 3-1 streak wins over Atlanta and Orlando, they also earned a reputation for their true flurries in the last third. By scoring a trio of goals in each of their last three consecutive home games, DC United could face another tough test. Returning to losing ground with a 2-1 defeat to Union over the weekend, the midweek visitors showed some real problems away. With only one win away from Audi Field so far this season, Chicago should be sniffing a chance.

Verdict: Chicago Fire wins

Best odds: 11/10

Bookmaker: Unibet

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