The Chicago Fire are 10 games into their 2021 season, and it has been a rough go to say the least. As it stands, the Chicago Fire are in last place in the Eastern Conference. They also have the worst record in the MLS. With one win, two draws, and seven losses, the Fire don't appear to be gearing up for a successful season this year. Through 10 games, let's check in on the state of the Chicago Fire.
It takes some maneuvering to identify highlights for the worst team in soccer currently, so bear with me. One area in which the Fire are doing well is their number of interceptions defensively. The Fire have 131 interceptions on opposing passes, which is good for 8th in the league. They also take a lot of shots despite their poor shots on target and shooting percentage stats. As of now, the Fire have taken 149 shots, good for 7th in MLS.
On an individual level, Luka Stojanović leads the team with three goals despite only making seven starts in nine appearances. The 27-year-old has been one of the very few bright spots for this Fire team. He is tied for 20th in MLS in made goals.
For this category, we have several areas on which we can focus on. The Chicago Fire are second to last in total goals scored with seven. Yes, Stojanović has scored nearly 43% of the team's goals, and six of the ten games have resulted in the Fire being shut out. They are also tied for third in goals given up with 20. Goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth's 67.3% save percentage has the Fire ranked 17th in the league, so there is both a lack of scoring prowess and defensive success.
Star forward Robert Berić, who is making the top salary on the Chicago Fire this year at $2.7 million, only has one goal in 10 matches. He has 31 shots but only seven SoT for a 22.6 SoT%. Last season, in his first MLS season for the Fire, Berić had 12 goals on 60 shots. His SoT% was 45.0, and that level of success we were expecting just has not shown through.
State of the Fire
On a scale of completely out to a blazing flame, we could place the state of the Fire at Charmander's tail in the rain before Ash helps him.
It is not that the Fire are entirely extinguished. It's just that they are barely hanging on. In their last match, the Fire played the 3rd place Philadelphia Union to a 3-3 draw. They arguably could have won the game if not for a controversial no call. The Fire are not hitting on many shots right now, but they are taking tons of them. If the team can get their shots more on target, the points might start coming. There are 24 games to go in the MLS season, so stick with us as we keep you updated every step of the way throughout the Fire's season.