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Fire Gear Up for 2006 Season

By Todd McClamroch in News on Mar 14, 2006 4:52PM

03_14_06_sports_fire.jpgThe Chicago Fire are less than three weeks away from their 2006 season opener at FC Dallas. The Fire have had a productive pre-season thus far winning five games, losing only two and earning four draws. In those eleven games they have outscored their opponents 16 to 11.

The Fire will start the season with a grueling nine game road trip before they can christen their new soccer-specific stadium. If the Fire can win a few games early in the year and stay in the title hunt, the stadium and their schedule could become a huge advantage for them.

The first Fire game in the new stadium will be against the New England Revolution on June 11 at 6pm. The Fire have a great opportunity to earn a victory in their first game against a Revolution team that will likely be missing their top two goal scorers from the 2005 campaign, forward Taylor Twellman and midfielder Clint Dempsey. Both are likely to be called up for the United States National team for the World Cup in June. After that game, the Chicago Fire will play nearly 70% of their remaining games in the friendly confines of the new Bridgeview Stadium.

Chicago Fire Fans will need to start writing out some new chants for the 2006 season as there will be two newly renamed teams coming to Chicago this year. One is the former San Jose Quakes, relocated to Houston and renamed Houston 1836 then quickly changed to the Houston Dynamo (our colleagues at Houstonist can explain the problems with 1836).

The other team is the New York/New Jersey Metrostars. They were bought by Red Bull last week and the team has been officially renamed "Red Bull New York" but on the pitch will be known as the New York Red Bulls.

Interested in proving your soccer managerial skills this season? Play in the division of fantasy soccer at Simply register a team and select as your division. No password is required.

Photo via Chicago Fire Bridgeview Stadium Webcam.