OTF Roundtable: The Signal, The Noise, and The German

Making predictions is hard. And it becomes even harder when the information you are working with is, well… noisy. In Nate Silver’s book, “The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail – But Some Don’t,” he connects our ineptability to make accurate predictions (humans, not Fire fans) as an evolutionary problem identifying the truth from nonsense.

In a line that feels very Chicago Fire-y, Silver says, “Some stone-age strengths have become information-age weaknesses.” Let’s replace “stone-age,” with “MLS 1.0,” pause for a moment, and then move on.

It’s been a really noisy four weeks: An opening draw against a Columbus team that might be awful, a shrug-then-bunker opening day against half an RSL side, then a dizzying loss to Atlanta that gave us about eight minutes of actual soccer to work with.  Bad soccer.

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Toothless Fire Desperate for Goals

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(via Chicago Fire website)

The absence of David Accam and a clinical finisher made apparent in their 2-1 loss.

Real Salt Lake demonstrated remarkable efficiency in front of goal on Saturday at Toyota Park and sent the Chicago Fire to a disappointing 2:1 defeat. The up-and-down Fire started the season with three consecutive defeats, bounced back to win three in a row, and have now dropped their last two. The biggest story continues to be the moribund finishing.

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New Soccer Era for Historic Soccer Town

St Louis FC's Bryan Gaul tees off in a preseason friendly last week. (via saintlouisfc.com)

STLFC’s Bryan Gaul tees off in a friendly last week. (via saintlouisfc.com)

Correspondent Matt Bird ponders the history of the beautiful game in STL as Saint Louis FC ups the quality with local talent and Chicago Fire reinforcements.
We’ve waited a long while, me, personally for nine months since the team was announced back in May 2014. Others will say they’ve been waiting for a team for five years since the one-year wonder AC Saint Louis folded in 2010.

Saint Louis is a soccer town, make no mistake about it. What kind of soccer town has yet to be determined. Back in the ’50s and ’60s was the heyday with Simpkins Ford and Kutis winning US Open Cups, and all too fondly remembered. The ’80s and ’90s were all about the indoor game with the Steamers and Ambush plying their trades around the tough MISL circuit. Now with MLS having exploded since the 1994 World Cup, the professional game has seemingly passed us by.
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