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The Philadelphia Union will head into Toyota Park on Wednesday night looking to knock off the Chicago Fire, and they will do so without Freddy Adu.
Adu did not make the trip to Chicago after being ruled out for the game with a quadriceps strain in his left leg. The 23-year-old midfielder picked up the knock last week and he missed the Union's 3-2 loss to the Columbus Crew this past weekend.
Without Adu, Union head coach John Hackworth will have to rely on some of his lesser-experienced players if he wishes to guide the Union to an upset over the Fire. Players like Chandler Hoffman, Zach Pfeffer and Jimmy McLaughlin may be relied upon in Philadelphia's first of five matches in October, a month that could go a long way in showing Hackworth which players are ready for bigger roles next season.
Here are more notes from around the league:
SAM A QUESTION MARK FOR FIRE ENCOUNTER
New York Red Bulls midfielder Lloyd Sam may have to wait to build on his promising first MLS start. Sam is questionable for the Red Bulls' all-important home game against the Chicago Fire on Saturday with the hamstring strain he picked up in last weekend's 4-1 win against Toronto FC. Sam shone in that match, giving the Red Bulls some width and the type of threat on the flanks that has not been seen at the club since the departure of Dane Richards.
PARDO IN DOUBT FOR RED BULLS CLASH
While the New York Red Bulls could be missing a talented midfielder for this weekend's game, so too could the Chicago Fire. Midfielder Pavel Pardo is doubtful to play when the Fire visit Red Bull Arena on Saturday afternoon because of a calf injury. Pardo is lamenting not playing in the crucial Eastern Conference clash with the Red Bulls, but he is adamant about not rushing back until he is back to full health.
Can the Union top the Fire without Adu? Do you see Sam dressing this weekend? How do you see the Fire faring without Pardo?
Share your thoughts below.