Before the international break, New England had gone unbeaten in six consecutive fixtures, while Chicago fell 3-1 to Toronto at the end of September and are currently 13 points back of a playoff position.
They already have first place in the Eastern Conference and a first-round playoff bye sewn up, but Bruce Arena and the Revs still look eager to make some more history.
Throughout this campaign, New England have started quickly and cruised from there, tallying 31 first-half strikes this season and 57 goals altogether, which is the best in the league in both departments.
The club is on pace to smash several league records and franchise records as well, with the most notable being the regular-season points total of 72 set by Los Angeles FC in 2019, as the Eastern Conference leaders are seven points behind that mark with five games remaining.
In their last victory over CF Montreal, the club clinched its first 20-win campaign in franchise history, becoming only the 14th team in MLS to accomplish that feat as they are eight points ahead of the Seattle Sounders for the Supporters' Shield crown.
Winning that many games in the regular season may be a brand-new feeling for most of the players, but it is something that manager Bruce Arena has now experienced three times as a coach in this league.
The former two-time coach of the US men's national team is two wins shy of the all-time MLS regular-season record of 240, set by Sigi Schmid.
Chicago may not be mathematically eliminated from postseason contention, but based on their performances of late, it looks like they have already packed it in for the year.
Interim manager Frank Klopas talked about a need to be competitive and fight till the end of matches, two things that we have not seen enough of from the Fire this season.
After narrowly missing the postseason by a single point in 2020, the core of this team have underperformed for large stretches of the year and have dug themselves what appears to be a nearly impossible deficit in the Eastern Conference.
The jobs of numerous players could be on the line for the rest of this campaign as this club have failed to deliver on some lofty expectations.
On the other hand, with such a significant gap in the table, perhaps we will see them play with a lot more poise and conviction, knowing that there is not much chance to progress to a top-seven position in the table, so you would think that might take away some of the pressure that they have been feeling.
The Fire have not won a game all season when conceding the opening goal, and for the first time all year, they lost their last match despite scoring first.
Four of their final five matches are on the road, so it seems inevitable that they will be officially eliminated from the playoff picture sooner rather than later, seeing as they have only collected one victory on the road this season.
Adam Buksa has a goal in three straight appearances for the Revs, notching his 13th in their last encounter, his fourth game-winner of the year, while Gustavo Bou has an assist in three consecutive matches.
Tajon Buchanan and Matt Turner should be back in the fold after they both featured prominently for Canada and the US during the World Cup 2022 qualifying window, with Buchanan scoring in a big victory versus Panama and Turner collecting a clean sheet in their win over Jamaica.
Maciel and Emmanuel Boateng are question marks with undisclosed injuries, Luis Caicedo made his second appearance of the season before the international window and Scott Caldwell continues to be a good luck charm for this team, who have not lost when the 30-year-old defensive midfielder has featured in 2021.
Chicago continues to be missing goalkeeper Kenneth Kronholm with a right knee injury, Brian Gutierrez has a right ankle issue, Boris Sekulic is suffering from back spasms, while Carlos Teran and Francisco Calvo have right thigh injuries.
Robert Beric is one of many Chicago players who have been underwhelming this year, as the Slovenian international scored only his fifth goal in league play in their last match after notching 12 in 2020.
Fabian Herbers assisted on the Beric goal against Toronto, his fourth of this campaign, while he also made his 19th start of 2021, which is a career-high for the German midfielder.
New England Revolution possible starting lineup:
Turner; Jones, Kessler, Farrell, Bell; McNamara, Polster, Buchanan; Gil; Buksa, Bou
Chicago Fire possible starting lineup:
Slonia; Bornstein, Pineda, Kappelhof; Medran, F. Navarro, Espinoza, Gimenez, Herbers; Beric, Ivanov
We say: New England Revolution 3-1 Chicago Fire
New England are hungry for that regular-season points record, and it is hard to bet against them in this one, given their depth and the fact that two of their key contributors are back.
For whatever reason, Chicago have not looked interested or motivated enough to start matches this year and their reactions when going behind have not been good enough.
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