Chicago Fire

Notes from the rewatch: Matt Polster's first start and Bastian Schweinsteiger the release valve

Notes from the rewatch: Matt Polster's first start and Bastian Schweinsteiger the release valve

Coach Veljko Paunovic made just one change to his lineup from the 4-1 win against Seattle last weekend.

Matt Polster stepped in at right back, replacing Drew Conner, to make his first start of the season in Wednesday's win against Colorado. He helped the Fire earn a shutout against the Rapids and had an assist.

Here's a look at how Polster fared and some Bastian Schweinsteiger gifs.

Polster's first start

Polster came on as a sub against Seattle to make his season debut. Given the Fire’s logjam in central midfield, where he played exclusively last year, Polster played at right back. He played the full 90 minutes at that spot against the Rapids.

He completed 54 out of 62 passes, assisted on the second goal and was credited with three more “key passes” on top of that.

Polster at right back gives you the skills and mind of a midfielder, but not the crossing ability expected of a wide player.

After the Seattle game, Polster said about playing right back, "I think there will be moments where I might look like I haven’t done it.”

In terms of his crossing that may be true. He missed a couple crosses on Wednesday, one badly, but was still able to contribute to the attack by playing more like a midfielder. On the second goal, his 1-2 pass and movement was reminiscent of a midfielder cutting through a defense. It worked in his favor after he set up David Accam for the goal.

Schweinsteiger the release valve

There's not much more that needs to be said about Schweinsteiger, but it does seem like the team is starting to get on the same page when it comes to how the German likes to play. Since his debut against Montreal where he put on a passing clinic, he has not made many killer passes to directly create chances.

However, he is settling things down and making sure the Fire keep possession. With Nemanja Nikolic leading the league in goals and David Accam (5 goals, 4 assists) also putting up good scoring numbers, the Fire's attackers can score enough goals as long as they are given the ball. Schweinsteiger has settled into the role of calming influence, often slowing things down to make sure the Fire keep the ball.

He has also showed off his ability to keep the ball and get out of pressure. Here are some examples:

U.S. wins Gold Cup, Dax McCarty brings phone to trophy stand

gold-cup-trophy.jpg
USA TODAY

U.S. wins Gold Cup, Dax McCarty brings phone to trophy stand

Dax McCarty sure knows how to celebrate like its 2017.

The Chicago Fire midfielder subbed on in added time of the U.S.'s 2-1 win against Jamaica in the Gold Cup final, which meant he was on the field when the final whistle was blown and the Americans claimed the title.

After the players received their medals, captain Michael Bradley lifted the trophy. McCarty brought his cell phone onto the trophy stand and took a video of the celebration. The video made it to his Instagram.

It's lit 🏆🏆🇺🇸🇺🇸

A post shared by Dax McCarty (@daxmccarty) on

The U.S. last won the Gold Cup in 2013, when the final was in Chicago, so it's fair to go a little nuts when the team wins again.

McCarty's celebration was a good one and now he rejoins the Fire this weekend after a month with the national team. The Fire play at Sporting Kansas City on Saturday.

Fire Talk Podcast: Does David Accam have a long-term future with the Fire?

accam-fire-pod.jpg
USA TODAY

Fire Talk Podcast: Does David Accam have a long-term future with the Fire?

Dan Santaromita and Shane Murray (MLSsoccer.com) recap the Fire's 2-1 loss at New York City FC and discuss why the team continues to struggle against shorthanded teams.

Next, they recap the Fire's All-Star selections and talk about David Accam's reaction to being left off the team.

Then, hear from forward Michael de Leeuw, who has some choice words about the Fire's performance in Yankee Stadium.

Dan and Shane return to talk about the weird Dom Dwyer trade from Sporting Kansas City and Orlando before the Fire head to KC on Saturday. Finally, the guys answer fan questions.

Listen to the full episode at this link or in the embedded player below: