CHI vs. NE - Pregame report

Marsch, Jesse - R ankle cartilage damage -- out
Razov, Ante - R ankle sprain -- questionable
Whitfield, Evan - R groin strain -- questionable

Fire history vs. New England
The Fire and Revolution will renew one of Major League Soccer's closest rivalries Sunday night, a series that currently stands deadlocked at 6-6-4. After not meeting until the midway point of their respective 2004 campaigns, the Fire and Revolution will become very familiar with each other thanks to a home-and-home series that will conclude this Wednesday, July 14 with the return match at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass. New England came away with a 2-1-1 advantage in the 2003 season series on the strength of a pair of victories at Gillette Stadium. However, the Fire got the better of the Revolution in Chicagoland last year, capturing a point via a 1-1 draw to open up the season on Apr. 13 and registering a 3-1 win on July 19 in matches played at Naperville's Cardinal Stadium that helped the Fire capture a 3-2-3 advantage at home all-time over the Revolution.

30,000 and counting ... Sunday could produce largest crowd in Fire history
If you are planning on attending Sunday night's historic Fire - U.S. Soccer doubleheader at Soldier Field you are definitely not alone, as over 30,000 tickets to the event have been sold as of Saturday morning. With that many tickets already in the hands of soccer-crazed Chicago fans, the Fire are expecting one of the largest - if not the largest - crowd ever at Soldier Field to see the "Men in Red." To break into the top three Fire Soldier Field attendance marks, Sunday's crowd would have to eclipse 36,444 - which is the number of fans that piled into the old Soldier Field for the club's first-ever match against the Tampa Bay Mutiny on Apr. 4, 1998. Later that season on Aug. 8, a crowd of 37,122 fans saw the Fire battle the Los Angeles Galaxy in what remains the most attended Fire home match in the club's history. Sunday's crowd is nearly a lock to break the attendance mark at the New Soldier Field, which was set when 30,845 fans saw the Fire defeat Columbus 2-0 last Oct. 10 in the Fire's inaugural match at the remodeled lakefront venue.

Fire and U.S. Soccer encourage fans to bring soccer supplies Sunday night for the PASSBACK program
The Chicago Fire will team up with the U.S. Soccer Federation to help collect new and gently-used soccer supplies at Sunday night's doubleheader as part of The PASSBACK Program - an initiative to help meet the equipment and uniform needs of every boy and girl who wants to play soccer in Chicagoland. The US Soccer Foundation, in partnership with MLS, Kwik Goal and Eurosport, will be collecting soccer equipment at select games during the 2004 MLS season to be passed on to local communities. Kwik Goal and Eurosport prizes will be awarded to those individuals and groups who bring in the biggest donations to Soldier Field tomorrow evening. For more information on The PASSBACK Program, please contact Phyllis Riedler at

Quick kicks vs. Revolution

  • Fire D/M Evan Whitfield will be forced to miss Sunday's match due to a red card he received late in last Saturday's 2-0 loss at the Columbus Crew.
  • While both the Fire and Revolution offenses have struggled this season, scoring 15 goals through 14 games (1.07 per game, T-8th in MLS), the difference between the two clubs can be found on defense, where Chicago has allowed only 1.07 goals per match (3rd in MLS) while the Revolution has allowed 1.64 per contest, placing them next to last in the League in scoring defense.
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