It seems like forever since Toronto FC fell 1-0 to the Montreal Impact at BMO Field. A lengthy international break meant no action for TFC last week and a lot of time to think about how things went wrong against Montreal.
A number of other MLS teams had matches, however, including today's opponent, the Chicago Fire. The Fire played their best home game of the season, beating the Philadelphia Union 3-0. They are now ninth in the Eastern Conference, after spending most of the year in the bottom spot.
Toronto FC, meanwhile, was passed by both New York teams in the standings. New York City FC is now the top team in the Eastern Conference after a 3-2 victory over D.C. United. The Red Bulls meanwhile, sit level on points with Toronto FC, but are marginally ahead on goal difference after a 1-0 victory over the New England Revolution.
Here are the stories to watch from tonight's match:
No Place Like Home
The Chicago Fire may be near the bottom of the MLS standings, but they sure don't play like it when they are at home. Chicago is unbeaten in their last nine games at home, and have only lost two of their last seven matches.
Today is the second of a three-game homestand for the Fire. While playoffs are looking like they are out of the question for Chicago, a win today would at least put them within striking distance with seven games remaining.
Who Steps up for Seba
Sebastian Giovinco may be the smallest player the pitch the vast majority of the time, but he always stands out. Today Toronto FC will have to fill the hole he left in the lineup when he went down to injury against the Impact. He is expected to be back sooner than originally anticipated, but not in time for this match.
Someone is going to have to step up, and a lot of that responsibility will fall on the shoulders of Jozy Altidore. The American striker had a strong international break, scoring three goals in the States' two World Cup qualifiers.
To be released at 7:30 p.m.
Venue: Toyota Park Bridgeview, Illinois
Kickoff: 8:30 p.m.
SB Nation Opposition Blog: Hot time in Old Time
TV: Sportsnet 360
Streaming: Sportsnet Now