“I didn’t know that one day I’d get a chance to play with the Fire. I’m just happy to be the winner out of everyone. Every player’s dream is to be a professional with the team they loved and rooted for when they were young. I’m really excited for the opportunity to join the team for preseason.” - Pareskevas Pantazopoulos, winner of the Fire’s annual open tryout (1/19)
“It’s been a dream ever since I was young to be a professional soccer player. I’m super excited and super happy to be with the Fire.” – Orr Barouch on signing with the Chicago Fire (3/14)
“It was absolutely important to get the win at home. Winning here is one of the things we are focused on changing. We got the best fan base in the league and we need to do our part in and be responsible for our actions on the field. We hope to create an environment and mentality that refuse to lose.” – Logan Pause after the Fire’s 3-2 win over Sporting Kansas City in its home opener (3/26)
“I was very, very excited. And when that happens, you don’t really think. You’re kind of just having fun and that’s what I was doing.” – Jalil Anibaba after his “guise through the smoke” stunned Colorado in a USOC play-in match. (3/31) Continue reading
Dominic Oduro scored his 7th career US Open Cup goal vs. Richmond to secure the Fire's place in the final vs. Seattle
Big matches make big players. And there may be no bigger stage for a Chicago Fire player this season than the US Open Cup Final to step up and make themselves a hero. Frank Klopas wrote his name into Chicago Fire folklore in 1998 with his extra-time match winning goal in the Fire’s inaugural season (and now has the chance to bring more glory to his name and the club as a coach) while Damani Ralph capped off a memorable season in 2003 with the only goal of the game in the final against the MetroStars. Now, eight years on from that final, and five years after Chicago’s most recent cup triumph, the stage is set for another Fire player to step up and help the team achieve its ultimate goal this season. Continue reading
A – Argentinean magic: Sebastian Grazzini has been a major reason for the Fire turning around a season that appeared destined for failure. To say the least, he has certainly been the answer to the Fire’s attacking problems. His Samba dance isn’t half bad either.
El Magico - a fantastic midseason addition to the Fire
B – Breaking bad: It wasn’t a great first half of the season by any means. After defeating Sporting Kansas City in its first home match of the season on March 26th, the Fire would go 11 matches without another league win. Fortunately, the month of August has seen the Fire finally turn things around.
C – Carlos de los Cobos: Deservedly sacked in May after a horrendous start to the new season. And although Frank Klopas didn’t have the best of starts, a lot of this season has been about repairing the damage caused by CLDC.
Not exactly "number one" in Chicago
Cristian Nazarit: Earning the big bucks with the Fire
If you’re like me, you spent about half of your Monday night reviewing and analyzing the updated list of MLS player salaries released earlier in the night. And if you’re really like me, you were probably left agape while you ran your eyes over some of the salary figures for the Chicago Fire. Scanning my eyes up and down the list, I expected to see Pavel Pardo at the top of the pile, followed closely by Marko Maric (previously the highest paid player) and Logan Pause – the club’s captain and longest serving member of the current squad. Instead, a certain 21-year-old from Columbia with two league goals and just six starts to his name this season currently stands as the Chicago Fire’s highest paid player with a salary that will raise plenty of eyebrows. Continue reading