“Dos a Cero”, Remember the Alamo, But Don’t Forget Your Raincoat

True to the mission statement of OTF, my recap of last night’s United States vs. Mexico match will be a mix of analysis, insight and fluff.  I’ll mix it up by starting with some insight, followed by some fluff and a snippet of analysis.

Insight:  Is a “Friendly” Ever Friendly?

The term “friendly” is a misnomer of sorts when the term involves United State vs. Mexico.  Regardless of where played or what’s at stake, a “friendly” match between the US and Mexico can be anything but friendly. As the highlights of the pre-game show demonstrated, shoving matches and stare downs are common place:

USA-Mexico-in-Columbus

(MLS.Com)

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The First Fan: Reflections on 10 Years Without Peter Wilt

Cf97_ChicagoFire_PeterWilt_OTF_USopencup

Ten years ago last week, news broke that the first President and General Manager of the Chicago Fire was leaving the club. Despite Peter Wilt’s departure from Major League Soccer, his influence in the North American game remains.  

In an age of “Circle the Wagon” franchise mentality, Wilt is a champion of fan culture, corporate accessibility, and organizational transparency.  Among other accomplishments, Wilt has plied his trade as CEO of the NWSL’s Chicago Red Stars, established the Milwaukee Wave soccer club, and is currently President of NASL’s Indy Eleven.

Some of OTF’s favorite soccer personalities were kind enough to answer the prompt:

“What are your reflections on Peter Wilt ten years after he left the MLS?”

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#cf97withdrawls: Red Stars Home Opener Edition

Red Stars Logo

UPDATE: According to this tweet from Chicago Local 134, there will be pizza and beer at the tailgate with a suggested donation of $5.

Well, the Fire just started getting it together, and suddenly we have a have a couple of bye weeks. No need to fret though, because the Chicago Red Stars will be opening their campaign this weekend and we have the answers to your questions in order to make your first trip just as enjoyable as visiting beautiful Bridgeview (if not more). Continue reading

@Jvlaha’s Monday Musings, Episode 1

There’s a new editor in charge of “On The Fire”, and with that, I’ve decided to step up and write a new column. Without further ado, here is the first episode of “Vlaha’s Monday Musings”.  Today’s piece comes in four parts…

Part One, “The Empire Strikes Back”, #Schedulegate

The-empire-strikes-back-soccer

First stop on today’s installment is #Schedulegate. Fire fans are justifiably upset about recent schedule changes which apparently were going to happen whether or not the Front Office was going to go along with them.

Although I can’t say that the Fire was a team firing on all cylinders during the team’s 3-2 Ping-Pong victory against Toronto, the team looked vastly improved over recent games. As a result of this win, the Fire could have strutted into our scheduled games Foxborough Massachusetts (this Wednesday) and Montreal (this weekend) with a bit of a “we can do this” swagger…

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Saints’ March: Stl FC Has Early Fan & Personnel Support

Saint Louis FC huddles up (via slc.fc)

Saint Louis FC huddles up. (via saintlouisfc.com)

As they face an early season challenge, OTF correspondent Matt Bird thinks Saint Louis FC has the personnel and the fan base to be a USL force.  Sydney Leroux agrees.

It’s been an odd few weeks of ups and downs here in St Louis. We received Patrick Doody from the Fire in time to travel to play the Tulsa Roughnecks in Tulsa on the 21st March. We also signed MLS Saint Louis native Brandon Barklage. This was quite the coup and was totally unexpected.

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OTF Roundtable: Do the Chicago Fire Deserve Harry Shipp?

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Harry shares the sports memorabilia in his old house. (via Chipotle’s Being Homegrown)

Near the end of the Fire’s third loss in a row last Saturday, Alexi Lalas doubled-down on his flattery of second year stand-out Harry Shipp by suggesting that he was the Fire’s only “real” DP, and further stating that Harry may be “Too Good” to play for Chicago…

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