Saturday, May 16, 2009

Toronto FC - Chicago Fire match preview and notes on Vancouver - Rochester live blog

It's going to be a battle at BMO Field this afternoon as Toronto FC take on the Chicago Fire at 4 p.m. Only one point separates the teams in the table; TFC are second in the Eastern Conference with a 3-2-4 record for 13 points, while the Fire are undefeated so far this year with a 2-0-6 record for 12 points and currently hold third place in the conference. Eastern leaders D.C. United are only one point ahead of Toronto and face the top team so far this season in Chivas USA on the road this evening, so either TFC or Chicago could conceivably vault their way into the top spot with a win.

One of the key battles to watch will be Chicago star Cuauhtemoc Blanco against Toronto's skillful holding midfielders. Toronto's been very successful at minimizing other teams' scoring opportunities lately, but they haven't faced an offensive threat of Blanco's calibre for quite some time. There's a great profile on him here from Jose Romero of the Seattle Times.

Another interesting note comes from the injury to Marvell Wynne midway through last game. Wynne's normally a starting wingback, but was playing as a striker when he was hurt. Nana Attakora, the young Canadian defender who's excelled so far this season, will likely move to the wingback slot and Marco Velez may return alongside Adrian Serioux in central defence.

It should certainly be a good match. I'll be live-blogging it both here and at The 24th Minute. I'll also have a live blog of tonight's Vancouver Whitecaps - Rochester Rhinos match, which starts at 10 p.m. Eastern. Come join in one or both live blogs with your thoughts and comments!

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