Friday, June 24, 2011

Fire's defense salvaging regular points

Fire GK Sean Johnson -- Getty Images
By Charlie Corr

BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. -- The Chicago Fire offense has not regularly produced over the past month, but the team's defense has turned into a saving grace for points.

Fire interim head coach Frank Klopas has been at the helm for five matches. Chicago has allowed only one goal and has garnered at least a point per game and a 1-0-4 record since the firing of Carlos de los Cobos.

One of the most apparent adjustments that Klopas made was moving to man marking versus zonal marking on set pieces. The Fire have yet to allow a set piece goal under Klopas.

"Set pieces have been a key," Fire defender Gonzalo Segares said. "Since we changed to man marking, that is one of the big reasons why we're doing better."

"That's just one area where we had given up goals, and we needed a change," Klopas said. "Obviously it was something that wasn't working. We changed it. We put guys on the post and stuff like that to make it comfortable for our goalkeeper when he comes out. Man marking suits us better."


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