Our prediction for this MLS match:
Chicago Fire continue with their habit of producing fine displays at home, while struggling on the travels. Following a 2-0 win over Philadelphia Union at their SeatGeek Stadium, Veljko Paunovic’s men suffered a 2-1 loss to New England Revolution in their last away game in the Major League Soccer. Despite losing to the Revs at Gillette Stadium, Chicago remained in the race for a place in the play-offs, but Sunday’s football game against Columbus Crew is of big importance for the away team.
The hosts, on the other hand, desperately needed a win against Cincinnati and they managed to get one. Columbus managed to put an end to their four-match winless run in the MLS and given Chicago Fire’s poor away record in the league, we are positive that the hosts are going to grab something from the MAPFRE Stadium clash.
Highlighted Player (Justin Meram):
Over the years Justin Meram has established himself as one of the best Iraqi footballers. The centre forward, who is capable of playing as a winger as well, was born in Shelby Charter Township, Michigan on December 4, 1988, but he represents Iraq on the international stage.
During his college career Justin Meram played for the likes of Yavapai Roughriders and Michigan Wolverines and in 2011 he joined MLS club Columbus Crew. Meram scored 37 goals in 188 appearances for the club in MLS before signing a deal with Orlando City in January, 2018.
The Iraq international made his debut for the Lions in a 1-1 draw with DC United on March 4 and he scored his first goal for the club on May 14 in a 2-1 loss to Atlanta United. As for his international career, Justin Meram made his Iraq debut in November, 2014 in a 1-0 defeat to Kuwait. The Orlando City attacker wears the number 9 shirt.
Highlighted Team (Chicago Fire):
Based in the suburb of Bridgeview, Illinois, Chicago Fire is a professional soccer club who compete in Major League Soccer. Chicago Fire were founded on October 8, 1997 and one year later they won the MLS Cup by beating D.C. United (2-0) in the title game. The club play their home games at Toyota Park, the venue that was opened on June 11, 2006. Chicago Fire won four U.S. Open Cups (1998, 2000, 2003 and 2006) and in 2009 they were beaten by UANL Tigres in the North American Superliga final.
The likes of Chris Armas, DeMarcus Beasley, Brian McBride, Eric Wynalda and Frank Klopas are some of the notable footballers who played for Chicago Fire in the past. It has to be noted that a number of veterans were part of the club as well: Cuauhtemoc Blanco, Pavel Pardo, Piotr Nowak, Hristo Stoichkov and Lubos Kubik.
The club’s official colors are red and white and they are nicknamed Men in Red. Veljko Paunovic, who won the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup with Serbia, is one of the club’s most famous coaches.