CHICAGO (Aug.19, 2022) - Chicago Fire FC II return to the Second City to face NYCFC II at SeatGeek Stadium on Saturday, Aug. 20. The match will be the first at home following a three-game road trip and a difficult slate of six of eight games on the road. The Fire will look for a better result against NYCFC II after their first meeting in May, a 3-0 loss at Belson Stadium in Queens, N.Y. First kick is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. CT and can be streamed on MLSNEXTPro.com.
The Fire (4-10-5-2, 19 points) will look to improve an attack that was shut out at Gillette Stadium last weekend in a 1-0 loss at New England Revolution II. Despite the result, Chicago showed plenty of creative play from a triumvirate of Josh Penn, Omari Glasgow and Alex Monis that kept New England on its heels throughout long stretches of the match. Meanwhile, Chris Brady continued to display a form that has given him the best save percentage in the league - 82.9 percent - and has helped the defense concede only 0.75 goals per match when he starts.
NYCFC II (8-7-4-2, 30 points) travel to Chicago looking to rebound from a 2-0 home loss against Orlando City B this past weekend. The result gave NYCFC II a tenuous grip on third place in the Eastern Conference, where they are separated by a better goal differential from fourth-place Rochester New York FC and only are one point above Inter Miami CF II and New England Revolution II. NYCFC II features one of the best offenses in MLS NEXT Pro, tied for third overall with 42 goals this year. The prolific attack is led by John Denis, whose team-leading 13 goals has him third in the league’s Golden Boot race.
KEYS TO THE GAME
Sweet Home Chicago. Chicago Fire FC II return to SeatGeek Stadium for the first time in over a month since their match against Orlando City B on July 17. The Fire have posted a record of 2-4-3 at home, while recording two of their three clean sheets this season at SeatGeek Stadium. They have only lost back-to-back home losses once this season - against Columbus and St. Louis, two of the best three teams in the league in points.
Kidd Rock. Matteo Kidd has been a mainstay in the central midfield throughout the season. With 14 starts and more than 1,200 minutes of action this season, Kidd has provided a consistent presence in the middle for the team. His sterling accurate pass percentage of 84.6 has helped grease the wheels of the attack and relieved some pressure from the defense. The number of minutes and clean passing has come despite suffering a team-leading 32 fouls from opposing players.
A Smooth Trip. Richard “Trip” Fleming III has played in 16 of the team’s 19 matches this season, starting in 14 of them. Despite playing the third most minutes on the team - 1,296 for the campaign - the Massachusetts native has only racked up one yellow card and committed less than one foul a match. In fact, the disciplined midfielder has racked up more ball-winning tackles (18) than fouls committed (14). His numbers are representative of a Chicago Fire FC II side that has committed the second-lowest number of fouls and third-lowest number of yellow cards in all of MLS NEXT Pro.
HOW TO WATCH
First kick against NYCFC II on Saturday, Aug. 20 is slated for 7:00 p.m. CT. A live video stream will start five minutes prior to the start of the match on MLSNEXTPro.com.