Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Fire forced into defensive adjustment

Gonzalo Segares -- Getty Images
By Charlie Corr

BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. -- The Chicago Fire have found a rare winning stretch, so the team would prefer few to no changes toward its lineup now that it has a good thing going. Chicago posted back-to-back league wins, followed by a Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup semifinal victory over the USL Pro's Richmond Kickers on Aug. 30.

But the Fire (4-7-15, 27 points) have no getting around a lineup adjustment this Saturday when they head out west to face the San Jose Earthquakes (5-10-11, 26 points). Left back Gonzalo Segares is not available because of yellow card accumulation.

That puts Fire interim head coach Frank Klopas on the spot as Chicago shoots for a third straight victory to continue its climb into the playoff picture. Will Klopas simply insert a bench player at Segares' left back position, or will he shift multiple players around within the defense and midfield?

"The whole thing is, who do you put there so you don't disrupt too many things?" Klopas said after Wednesday's training. "Because there's a good line of communication now with the group in the middle and stuff like that. It's just making a decision. Sometimes, that's why you sit around all night and you don't go to sleep, and you try to figure out -- is it this guy, is it this guy, is it this guy? But I have the confidence in any of the guys we put out there."


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