Today, D.C. United open their three-game homestand against classic Eastern Conference foes. In coming weeks it'll be the Revs and the Metros, but this afternoon, it's the Chicago Fire visiting East Capitol Street. Like our Black-and-Red, the Fire are winless this year, though they have two draws in their three games. Both teams have big scorers looking to get off the mark and defenses that are improved over last season but still imperfect. They play similar formations and styles - at least if early displays are to be believed. It's an interesting MLS matchup in the Nation's Capital on a rainy Saturday, and it's all on national TV. If you're not going to make it out to the stadium for this one, join other D.C. United fans in our live gamethread.
Time: The schedule says 4pm EDT, though if NBC's traditional form holds, kickoff won't be until closer to 4:20.
Venue: RFK Memorial Stadium in the District of Columbia
TV/Streaming: For this first time this year, United will be carried on national English-language television. John Strong will have the call on NBCSN. The game will also be available online through NBC Sports Live Extra.
DCU vs. Fire Predictions Thread
See what our staff and the members of the B&RU community think will happen when United take on the Fire this afternoon.
Projected D.C. XI: Look for the an unchanged side from Ben Olsen, despite the two subpar results. It'll be a 4-1-3-2 in front of Bill Hamid. Sean Franklin, Bobby Boswell, Jeff Parke and Cristian Fernandez make up the defense, and Perry Kitchen will try to break up play in front of them. Davy Arnaud, Luis Silva and Nick DeLeon will try to push the attack in front of them, with Eddie Johnson and Fabian Espindola up top.
Previews: We've got the game covered from every angle. Check out our Match HQ for all of B&RU's coverage this week, and be sure to head over to Hot Time in Old Town for the Chicago perspective. Over at dcunited.com, goalkeeping coach Preston Burpo talks shop, and Molly Bruh chats with some of the players for a video preview.
Prediction: I said at the top that both teams are looking for their first wins of the year. I don' think either team finds it today. I'm calling a 1-1 draw with goals from the big names: Eddie Johnson for United and Mike Magee for the visitors.
What Are You Drinking?: Chilly (but blessedly warmer) and rainy - I'm thinking Negro Modelo today.
As always, this is your place for pre-game, in-game and post-game commentary and conversation with other United fans. Have at it.