The New England Revolution will look to stay hot after a long layoff when they play Chicago Fire FC on Saturday night in Foxborough, Mass.
New England (20-4-5, 65 points) sits atop the Supporters' Shield standings and already has secured the top overall seed in the Eastern Conference during the 17-day international window.
The Revolution are unbeaten in 15 of their past 16 matches (13-1-2) and in eight straight at home, where they are a league-best 11-1-2 this season.
A victory over Chicago would match the club record for home victories while making New England the fifth team in MLS history to win 21 games in a regular season. The Revs also are seven points shy of tying the league's all-time points record (72) for a single season.
"It's been good to get that little kind of break and reset, and to come back into things refreshed, and kind of give it one last go in this last stretch of five games," Revolution midfielder Tommy McNamara said. "Then we'll worry about playoffs after that."
New England goaltender Matt Turner (United States), midfielder Tajon Buchanan (Canada) and forward Adam Buksa (Poland) were called from the team for international duty during the break.
Chicago (7-16-6, 27 points) is looking to finish its season on a high note after a disappointing campaign. The Fire have dropped four consecutive road matches and are 1-11-1 away from home this season.
Since the beginning of last season, Chicago is 1-17-6 on the road -- its lone road win coming in a 1-0 decision at the New York Red Bulls on Aug. 28.
"Look, these guys are professionals. I think we have to do our job and try to be competitive all the way to the end," Fire interim coach Frank Klopas said. "Every game we go into it with the belief and the confidence to get three points."
Chicago captain and defender Francisco Calvo (Costa Rica) and midfielder Gaston Gimenez (Paraguay) also were called up for duty during the international break.
The Fire are 0-3-2 in their past five meetings with the Revolution. On Sept. 22, New England earned a 3-2 win at Chicago after playing the Fire to a 2-2 draw on the road in its season opener on April 17.
--Field Level Media