Our prediction for this MLS match:
Chicago Fire play host to Vancouver Whitecaps at their Soldier Field in what is expected to be a close Major League Soccer encounter. Chicago Fire do not seem to be at their sharpest, with the team losing to both Orlando City and Los Angeles Galaxy in the previous two league matches, but they are surely capable of matching Vancouver Whitecaps in front of home fans. Midfielder Gaston Gimenez serves a one-game ban, while both Javier Casas and Chris Mueller are out of contention with injuries.
The Canadian outfit, on the other hand, aim to build on a 3-2 win over Portland Timbers. Vancouver are eager to stay in the playoffs berth, but beating Xherdan Shaqiri and Co. on the road is easier said than accomplished. Taking everything into account, we predict that the two sides are going to share the spoils in the midweek clash. Both Thomas Hasal and Luis Martins are injured for the away team.
Highlighted Player (Xherdan Shaqiri):
Another impressive player who emigrated to Switzerland, Xherdan Shaqiri is a midfielder with excellent technical qualities, very strong in taking players on and creating chances for his teammates, while also being a danger from set pieces. The Serbian-born footballer formed an excellent midfielder pairing with Granit Xhaka at FC Basel, before making a high-profile move to Bayern Munich in the summer of 2012.
Shaqiri went on to prove a great deal of potential at Allianz Arena, scoring 11 goals in 52 Bundesliga matches, but he decided to leave in search of first team football, first joining Inter Milan and then moving to Stoke City. It was at Britannia Stadium that the attacking midfielder rediscovered his form and if he continues playing at such a high level, it won’t be long before he returns to the biggest stage.
Even when he was not playing regularly at club level, Shaqiri would always reserve his best performances for the national team, as witnessed by 17 goals in first 50 caps. The midfielder was especially impressive at the 2014 World Cup finals, where he scored no fewer than three goals.
Highlighted Team (Vancouver Whitecaps):
Vancouver Whitecaps are yet another Canadian side that compete in Major League Soccer. Vancouver began play in the USA top flight in 2011 and one year later they became the first Canadian outfit to book their place in the MLS Cup play-offs. However, star-studded Los Angeles Galaxy proved to be a big catch for the Whitecaps in the knockout round. Vancouver, though, did remarkably well to win the Canadian Championship in 2015, with the team beating Montreal Impact in the title game.
In 2016 they made it to the final of the tournament as well, but Toronto FC eventually won the trophy. The Whitecaps are owned by Greg Kerfoot, Steve Luczo, Jeff Mallett and Steve Steve Nash, the former NBA star, and they play their home matches at BC Place. Speaking of MLS games, the capacity of the venue is 22.120 and you should know that the stadium was opened back in 1983. The Caps wear white shirts and white shorts when playing at home, while the colour of their away kit is blue.