CHICAGO - The Chicago Fire Juniors has announced that the club's Senior Development Program (SDP) (Under-23s) will take on Milwaukee Wave United in an exhibition match tomorrow evening, Wednesday June 22, in Cary, IL. The contest, which is being hosted by the Cary Defenders soccer club, will kick off at 6:45 p.m. CT at Cary Grove Park, located at 2208 Three Oaks Rd. in northwest suburban Cary. Admission for the midweek game will be free of charge and media members will not need credentials to gain admittance to the match.
The Fire Senior Development Program is still searching for the first victory of its 2005 inaugural campaign. In its most recent contest on June 11, the Fire Senior squad faced a talented Croatian U-21 Olympic squad in a back-and-forth match that ended in a 2-2 tie. Prior to that match-up, the Fire SDP played in a 2-0 loss at the hands of another member of the Chicago Fire family, the Chicago Fire Premier of the Premier Development League.
Wednesday's match will mark the first meeting between the two clubs since the Fire Senior Development Program formed in late May. The Chicago Fire Senior Development squad is part of the MLS club's youth development program, the Chicago Fire Juniors. The Fire Juniors is the official youth club of the Fire and the only club of its kind in Major League Soccer, with a fully integrated pyramid of player development from U-8 to the professional level.
The recently formed Wave United will slip on their outdoor boots for Wednesday's contest less than a month after its indoor squad, the Milwaukee Wave, claimed the Major Indoor Soccer League Championship in a thrilling two-game series over the Cleveland Force. Much of the Wave's roster will make the leap to the Wave United squad, which had participated in the United Soccer League's A-League (now First Division) during the 2003 and 2004 seasons. While the Fire's Senior Development squad has never met Wave United, the Milwaukee club does have a past with the Fire's first team, as "Men in Red" defeated Wave United 4-1 in a Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup fourth round match on Aug. 6, 2003.