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Union vs Chicago Fire, First Half Diary

-Nick, the other .5 of Unholy Union

Welcome to my first half diary of Union vs. Chicago Fire.  The match is on Fox Soccer Channel so I will be able to better track the action and type, because, you know, I can type and watch TV at the same time.
I have plenty of, ahem, “refreshments” at tableside, so here is the starting lineup:

Brad Knighton; Michael Orozco Fiscal, Danny Califf, Sheanon Williams, Jordan Harvey; Justin Mapp, Andrew Jacobson, Stefani Miglioranzi, Sebastien Le Toux; Alejandro Moreno, Danny Mwanga

Knighton is going to get another chance to show that he doesn’t intend to just tackle the opposition, and maybe show that he can catch a ball cleanly.  Both are good ideas.  The 20-year old, Sheannon Williams, previously of the Harrisburg City Islanders, is getting the start in the place of Juan Diego Gonzalez.
Alejandro Moreno is back in the starting XI, and hopefully that doesn’t mean the offense will run like a clogged toilet.  No Fred, again, with Andrew Jacobson getting the start.  I’m intrigued by Williams and Knighton.  Cap’n Califf will have his work cut out for him.

A moment of silence was observed, as this is the 9th anniversary of that terrible day in 2001.  It takes some of the fanatacism out of my tone, remembering that this is merely a game and there are far more important things in life.

That being said, I will attempt to interject humor into this blog and make this an amusing read, while allowing yo to feel like you know exactly how the game is going

0-Unholy Union co-founder, Dan K., is in attendance so I will probably get text messages to insert into this thread
0-Orozco Fiscal moves in to central defense and Williams will be at the right back position
1-Chicago acquired Freddie Ljungberg from seattle since we last played Chicago.  We saw him with Seattle in the season opener.  He flops lots
2-Jacobson plays a bad ball wide in the box and Mwanga gets tripped by Chciago’s keeper, and he appears to have hurt his shoulder on the fall.  Not good
4-(From Dan K.-No lie, Captain Morgan walked by us with wenches)  This is need-to-know information.
5-A bunch of midfield play so far, nothing all that exciting
5-Moreno gets shielded off, but gets called for a foul.  Another reason why he needs to be pulled from the lineup is because he doesn’t get a fair shake from refs
6-Union keep lobbing long balls down the right wing, but not able to collect them.  The Fire keeper looks goofy
7-Though listed as a 4-4-2. Union appear ling they are playing a 4-3-3, with Mwanga and Moreno being joined by a wing player frequently
9-Free kick for Fire.  Great play by Chi, but they went offside and negated a header goal
10-Sheannon Williams can throw FAAAAAAR.  His throw led to a direct chance, maybe a Chi handball in the box but it was cleared and I like Williams throwing already.
11-Moreno gets hit like a truck and actually gets a call!  Yay!
12-Chance for Union as Le Toux heads a ball as a lay off and gets a return feed but too close to the keeper
12-Union press the goal kick right back and Williams on the overlap is stopped.
13-Union are playing like a 4-3-3, they are attacking heavily and chasing to get back on defense.
14-The announcers are already making excuses for all of the Chicago players that are missing due to injury
15-Nice build leads to a throw, but its short this time and is cleared.  Drat!
15-Le Toux picks some poor bastard’s pocket from behind.  Because he’s better than that guy
17-What the hell is Mapp doing on the right???
17-Great ball played ahead to Mwanga and it gets played out for a corner.  Chance wasted, though
19-A toothless cross from the left by Harvey.  Crosses are ineffective when there are none of your teammates around to receive said pass, Jordan. 
20-Mwanga makes a great run, but his pass is a bit too high and no shot again
20-Knighton really hasn’t had much to do.  Let’s keep it that way
22-Moreno, for some reason, was cherry-picking.  The offside rule doesn’t like that
23-We’ve reached the 23rd minute which is a new career long for Brad Knighton in an MLS game for Union!  Congrats!
23-A nice build is thwarted by a clear on a Williams cross, who gets the throw which is played out for a corner
24-Another short corner.  Yuck.  When did we become Real Madrid where we can get tricky with set-pieces???
-Sorry about the delay, my bottle of beer exploded all over, and it wouldn’t stop foaming.
32-corner for Fire ends with a clearance and a goal kick.  I like how this team is looking right now
33-Mwanga called offside, and I’m not so sure
35-Dan K. thinks the sideline ref is blowing the game.  I disagree
36-Wide open run by Mwanga created an assist for Mapp to Le Toux
38-There’s smoke behind the Knighton goal.  Maybe Chicago can’t see it…
40-Union are still pressing for goals.  It’s great.  I think my beer eruption was a harbinger of the Union attack (I hope)
42-A quick restart on a freekick leads to a weak shot by Mwanga
44-Collings John gets a good strike but Knighton saves and it gives a corner
44-First corner is touched over the line by Knighton, the second is caught by Brad.  Well done.
45-Just saw a FSC promo that says the next episode of Soccer Talk Live will feature Alexi Lalas and CHAD OCHOCINCO!!!  I will drop everything for that.
45+-Moreno gets annihilated and earns a yellow on his defender, Conde.  Wow, what a hit.
45+-Le Toux with the free kick, but the play is offside
AND that’s the first half

Union are attacking fluidly, and not lettng much happen on their defensive half.  I like the way this game is playing out.  Look for more of the same in the second half, as Union have 3 subs that can really apply pressure to Chicago, who need 3 points this week to help their playoff push.

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