Chicago Fire Soccer Club

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Chicago Fire
Chicago Fire Soccer Club.svg
Full name Chicago Fire Soccer Club
Nickname(s)
  • The Fire
  • Men in Red
Founded 1997
Stadium Toyota Park
Bridgeview, Illinois
Ground Capacity 20,000
Chairman Andrew Hauptman
Head Coach Frank Yallop
League Major League Soccer
2013 Eastern Conference: 6th
Overall: 12th
Playoffs: Did not qualify
Website Club home page
Current season

Chicago Fire Soccer Club is an American professional association football club based in the Chicago suburb of Bridgeview, Illinois. The team competes in Major League Soccer (MLS). The organization is named for the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, and was founded on October 8, 1997, the event's 126th anniversary. In their first league season in 1998, the Fire won the MLS Cup as well as the U.S. Open Cup (the "double"). They have also won U.S. Open Cups in 2000, 2003, and 2006; in addition to the 2003 MLS Supporters' Shield.

The Fire maintain an extensive development system, consisting of the Chicago Fire Premier (Premier Development League and Super-20 League teams), the Chicago Fire NPSL team, the Chicago Fire Development Academy, and the Chicago Fire Juniors youth organization. They also operate the Chicago Fire Foundation, the team's community-based charitable division. Toyota Park is the Fire's home stadium. The team's head coach is Frank Yallop. The team also has two assistant coaches and a goalkeeping coach.

History[edit]

Overview[edit]

Founded on October 8, 1997, the club was originally based at Soldier Field. Since 2006, they reside at Toyota Park at 71st and Harlem Avenue in Bridgeview. The owners of the Fire are Andell Holdings, who purchased the club in 2007. Andell Holdings director Andrew Hauptman acts as club chairman, while the director of soccer is Frank Yallop and the Chief Operating Officer is Atul Khosla. The Fire are historically most successful in the U.S. Open Cup; winning championships in 1998, 2000, 2003, and 2006. The Fire keeps a close connection with the Chicago Sting (its predecessor team in the NASL) by holding frequent commemorative events, reunions, and wearing Sting-inspired shirts.

Many notable players have worn the Fire shirt, including U.S. internationals Chris Armas, Carlos Bocanegra, Frank Klopas, DaMarcus Beasley, Brian McBride, Tony Sanneh, Cory Gibbs, Ante Razov, Josh Wolff and Eric Wynalda. Some of the club's other notable American professional players include C.J. Brown, Jesse Marsch, Chris Rolfe, and Zach Thornton. The Fire also has a reputation for importing international talent, from established veterans like Pável Pardo, Piotr Nowak, Cuauhtémoc Blanco, Tomasz Frankowski, Lubos Kubik and Hristo Stoichkov; in addition to younger players such as Patrick Nyarko, Marco Pappa, Damani Ralph, Bakary Soumare, and Nery Castillo.

Club foundation and initial success[edit]

Founded in 1997 at Navy Pier, on the anniversary of the Great Fire, the Fire immediately tapped into the diverse ethnic makeup of the city. The team brought in Polish players Piotr Nowak, Jerzy Podbrozny, and Roman Kosecki; the Mexican Jorge Campos; and the Czech Lubos Kubik. While all showed their talent while playing for Chicago that first year, American players (Zach Thornton, Chris Armas, C.J. Brown) proved most integral to the Fire's continued success. Under the club's first head coach, Bob Bradley – and against all expectation – the team completed the double in its first competitive year, beating D.C. United in the 1998 MLS Cup Final, and defeating the Columbus Crew in Chicago to win the 1998 U.S. Open Cup a week later.

The team's momentum continued, reaching the 2000 MLS Cup final (losing to Kansas City) and winning the 2000 U.S. Open Cup. Internationally experienced players such as Hristo Stoitchkov joined the Fire, while young American talents such as DaMarcus Beasley developed. The Fire quickly became cemented as one of the league's preeminent teams.

Nomadic times[edit]

With Soldier Field undergoing massive renovations, the Fire moved to the western Chicago suburb of Naperville, Illinois in 2002. That same year, Bob Bradley abruptly departed the team to lead the MetroStars, from his home state of New Jersey. The Fire then selected the U.S. men's national team's top assistant, Dave Sarachan, to assume the vacant post.

Chicago qualified for the league final while also capturing the Supporters' Shield and 2003 U.S. Open Cup along the way. The team returned to Chicago and the renovated Soldier Field midway through the 2003 season.

After that season, longtime captain Piotr Nowak retired to take a position in the front office. He departed a year later to become manager of D.C. United. In this period new talent emerged, including Jamaican striker Damani Ralph. Still, stagnating performances and the building strength of the Eastern Conference made Chicago's league position ever more tenuous. In 2004, the team missed the league playoffs for the first time in their history.

Turmoil, and a permanent home[edit]

The 2005 season began with the unexpected dismissal of popular club president Peter Wilt by then-owners AEG, a move decried by fans, many players, and club staff.[1] This came as a shock, given his brokering of a $100m deal to build the Fire a stadium in the collar suburb of Bridgeview. He was immediately replaced by Metrostars executive John Guppy.

Competitively, the season was most notable for the blockbuster visit of Milan from Italy's Serie A, and the surprising 4–0 away defeat of D.C. United in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.

2006 arrived, and the Fire moved from Soldier Field into its new stadium in Bridgeview, on the southwest side of Chicago: Toyota Park, located at the corner of 71st Street and Harlem Avenue. In its first season, it played host to an unspectacular league campaign; but victory in the 2006 U.S. Open Cup marked a continuation of the club's successes and promise for the future.

The anxiety to win another league title continued to grow, however. Sarachan entered 2007 (his fifth season in charge) under intense pressure from fans and the administration to produce a league championship. Tension mounted further on April 3, 2007, when the Fire signed Mexico and América star Cuauhtémoc Blanco to a Designated Player contract. After a perfect three matches to open the year, they won only one of their next eight, and Sarachan was dismissed. Following a brief search, Millionarios manager Juan Carlos Osorio was named the club's third head coach.

The Hauptman era[edit]

A home game at Toyota Park in 2007

More change came soon afterward. On September 6, 2007, Andell Holdings, a Los Angeles-based private investment firm controlled by Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Andrew Hauptman, acquired AEG's interests in both the Chicago Fire Soccer Club and Toyota Park. Reports estimated the purchase price to be upwards of $35 million.[2]

On the field, behind Blanco and Wilman Conde, Osorio's central defender at Millionarios, the Fire went on an extended unbeaten run to close the season, easily qualifying for the playoffs but were defeated at New England in the Eastern Conference Final. On December 10, 2007, the Fire announced Osorio's resignation. He was named manager of the New York Red Bulls eight days later. Hauptman filed tampering charges with the league in protest, and the Fire were compensated by the Red Bulls with cash and draft picks.[3]

Changes came quickly in Osorio's wake. On January 17, 2008, former Fire star Frank Klopas was named Technical Director in charge of player personnel, and longtime Fire assistant Denis Hamlett was appointed manager. While the Fire struggled at home in 2008 the team found unusual success on the road, gathering 22 out of a possible 45 away points. Momentum grew with the long-anticipated signing of Chicago native Brian McBride on a free transfer in July 2008. After disposing of the Red Bulls 5–2 in the season's final game, they decisively conquered New England in the first round of the playoffs with a 3–0 victory at home. This was Chicago's first playoff advancement over the Revolution in four consecutive seasons. But triumph only lasted for a week, as they again missed the league final with their 2–1 Eastern Conference Final loss to eventual champion Columbus.

The 2009 season saw few alterations to the previous year's roster. The story of the season was much the same, as continued poor home form offset excellent performances away from Toyota Park. This led to a second place Eastern Conference finish behind Columbus. Despite this, Real Salt Lake managed to upset the Crew in the quarterfinals, meaning Chicago would host the semifinal for the first time in six years. Chicago's nearly flawless home playoff history meant little in the end, as they lost to Salt Lake, 5–3, on penalties after 120 scoreless minutes. Shortly thereafter, manager Denis Hamlett was dismissed.[4]

A team in flux[edit]

Leading up to 2010, Chicago hired Carlos de los Cobos as head coach, previously manager of El Salvador.[5] Cuauhtémoc Blanco, Chris Rolfe and Gonzalo Segares all departed. More changes came in the summer transfer window with the trade of Justin Mapp to Philadelphia, the acquisition of Mexican international striker Nery Castillo, and the trade for former Swedish international midfielder Fredrik Ljungberg. Defender Gonzalo Segares returned to the Fire, leaving Apollon Limassol after only six months away. Despite these reinforcements, the Fire failed to qualify for the playoffs for only the second time in club history. Former US international Brian McBride and club original C.J. Brown retired at season's end, followed closely by the departures of Wilman Conde, Ljungberg, and Castillo.

2011 began much in the way of 2010, with foundering performances both home and away. After nine winless matches, Carlos de los Cobos was let go on May 30, 2011.[6] Technical Director Frank Klopas was named interim head coach. Behind summer reinforcements Pavel Pardo and Sebastián Grazzini, as well as forward Dominic Oduro's 12 goals after being acquired in a trade from Houston, the Fire qualified for the US Open Cup Final (lost at Seattle) and narrowly missed making the playoffs after gaining 24 points in their last 12 league matches. After the season's conclusion, Klopas was given the permanent manager job on November 3, 2011.[7]

Although expectations were modest for 2012, Klopas' first full season as coach, the year saw a change in fortune for the Fire. The spring and summer months saw several new acquisitions for the club, starting with the reacquiring of Chris Rolfe from Aalborg BK.[8] Rolfe, who scored eight goals and 12 assists in the 21 games he played in 2012, would later be named the Fire's MVP.[9] Other signings included Brazilian midfielders Alex Monteiro de Lima from the Swiss side FC Wohlen, Alvaro Fernandez from Seattle Sounders FC, forward Sherjill MacDonald from Beerschot AC of Belgium and veteran defender Arne Friedrich from VfL Wolfsburg. Although they would fall out of the U.S. Open tournament early that season, the Fire eventually compiled a 17–11–6 record, their best since 2000, and ranked as high as second in the Eastern Conference before ending the year in fourth place.[10] On October 31, 2012, in their first playoff appearance since 2009, the Fire lost their first-round MLS Cup playoff match-up at home against the Houston Dynamo, 2–1.[11]

In the 2012-2013 offseason the franchise made some moves to improve on 2012's success. The team acquired Joel Lindpere and Jeff Larentowicz and also traded Dominic Oduro for Dilly Duka and the rights to Robbie Rogers.[12] The beginning of the season saw the team struggling to score goals, resulting in a record of 2-5-1, with a goal differential of -8 through April. After two successive losses to the Union in May, and with veteran Arne Friedrich still on IR, the Fire acquired their former centerback Bakary Soumaré from Philadelphia.[13] Also in May, semi-retired International Robbie Rogers returned to the United States and expressed an interest to play only in Southern California, at which point a deal was brokered for Rogers' rights in exchange for Chicago native Mike Magee from the Los Angeles Galaxy.[14] On June 23, 2013, Friedrich, who had not played a 2012-13 game due to recurring injuries, announced his retirement from professional football.[15] After starting the season 2-7-3, the additions of Soumare and Magee led to seven wins in the squad's last 10 games. The Fire were busy in the transfer window as well, adding veteran defensive midfielder Arévalo Ríos and forward Juan Luis Anangonó.[16] After an energizing 12-6-6 finish to the season, the Fire narrowly missed the playoffs for the third time in the last four years — losing out to the Montreal Impact on goal differential. On October 30, 2013, the club announced that the president of soccer operations Javier Leon and head coach Frank Klopas had stepped down,[17] but the Fire front office had a replacement one day later.

The Yallop Era[edit]

On October 31, 2013 Chicago Fire named Frank Yallop as its new head coach and director of soccer.[18] On December 5, 2013, Fire MVP Mike Magee became the first Fire player to win the Volkswagen MLS MVP Award — beating out Los Angeles Galaxy's Robbie Keane and Montreal Impact's Marco Di Vaio for the honor.[19][20][21] Meanwhile, Yallop was busy recruiting a new coaching staff which included "Ring of Fire" member and Chicago Fire veteran C. J. Brown and former U.S. International striker Clint Mathis as the team's assistant coaches, adding Columbus Crew's Brian Bliss as Technical Director. Former Fire forward Brian McBride was added as an assistant coach in May 2014 for a short-term assignment.[22][23][24][25]

The shake-up extended to the roster, as Yallop moved team veterans and starters and brought in youth prospects — reforming the team while freeing up cap space. Major exits in early 2014 included Chris Rolfe,[26] Austin Berry,[27] Jalil Anibaba, Daniel Paladini. Filling that void was a handful of youth prospects including Harrison Shipp (homegrown player), Benji Joya (via MLS "weighted lottery"), and Grant Ward on loan from Tottenham Hotspur.

Colors and badge[edit]

Chicago Fire alternate logo (1998–2006)

The official club colors are red and white. Over its history, the Fire have also employed navy blue, sky blue, and black as alternate colors.

The Chicago Fire logo is derived from the standard shape of a fire department's crest (also shown by the Chicago Fire Department), also known as a Florian's cross. This style was chosen by the original general manager, Peter Wilt, to establish a timeless image evocative of both classic American sports (as in the logos of the NHL Original Six) and the traditions of European soccer.

The logo features a stylized 'C' at its heart (representing Chicago), similar to the logos of the Bears and Cubs. The six points in a ring around the center allude to the stars in the Municipal Flag of Chicago, specifically the one commemorating the Great Chicago Fire of 1871.

Nike, the Fire's original equipment supplier, intended for the team to be named the Chicago Rhythm. The Rhythm identity featured a turquoise, black and green color scheme, and a logo adorned with a cobra. Team officials ignored Nike's work, and privately developed the Fire identity with the help of Adrenalin, Inc., a well known sports-specific branding agency.[28]

The original Fire shirts were chosen because of their resemblance to a Chicago fireman's coat, featuring broad horizontal stripes across the torso and sleeves. In the first year, the home jersey was red and white with a silver "FIRE" on the stripe; while the away shirts were white and black in the same style. The jersey has remained remarkably constant ever since, continually maintaining the same format of an all-red shirt with a white horizontal chest stripe, even through changes in equipment sponsor (from Nike, to Puma, and currently adidas). Conversely, the Fire's secondary shirts have changed much over the years from white with black, to white with navy, to white with red, to all-white style and the all-blue currently used. Third shirts have often been yellow (originally to honor the Chicago Sting, later for the expired partnership with Morelia). A popular light blue third shirt was worn in 2005, based on the Municipal Flag of Chicago but was discontinued during the sponsorship change to Adidas the next year.

The club and their fans make frequent use of the symbols of Chicago, as a show of civic pride. Most prominent are the six-pointed Chicago stars, but the light blue color associated with the city, the municipal device, and the city skyline appear regularly on materials produced by the club and its fans. The municipal flag of Chicago is also favored by fans and often seen at the stadium, in a manner akin to the use of the flag of Catalonia by FC Barcelona fans but without a nationalist subtext.

Sponsorship[edit]

Period Kit manufacturer Shirt sponsor
1998-2002 Nike None
2003-2005 Puma
2006-2007 Adidas
2008-2010 Best Buy
2011 None
2012–present Quaker Oats Company

Stadium[edit]

Toyota Park, Chicago Fire's home stadium since 2006

Chicago plays its home games at Toyota Park in the Chicago suburb of Bridgeview, Illinois. The soccer-specific stadium opened on June 11, 2006 and was developed at a cost of around $100 million.

For its first years in the league the Fire played at Soldier Field, the 61,500-capacity home of the Chicago Bears of the NFL and one of the main venues of the 1994 FIFA World Cup. While that stadium was undergoing a $632 million renovation, the Fire played at Cardinal Stadium in Naperville, Illinois, on the outskirts of the Chicago metropolitan area. They returned to Soldier Field toward the end of 2003, remaining there through the end of 2005.

Home stadiums[edit]

Other stadiums[edit]

Club culture[edit]

Supporters[edit]

"Section 8", the supporters area at Toyota Park

There is a noteworthy fan culture for the Fire, existing from the date the club was founded, and building on an enthusiasm throughout Chicago sports. At matches, supporters and ultras groups occupy a standing area directly behind the north goal, in the Harlem End of Toyota Park. This area is referred to as Section 8, originating from the numbering of the corresponding section at Soldier Field and the American military designation of mentally unfit soldiers.[citation needed] Section 8 Chicago, the Independent Supporters' Association for the Fire, oversees the activities of these numerous groups. While incorporating a worldwide variety of styles with a Chicago bent, groups as part of Section 8 generally fall under the ultras designation. Additionally, an associated spinoff group called "Sector Latino" congregates in Section 101 at the stadium's South end. The Section 8 Chicago ISA,[clarification needed] an umbrella organization for all Fire fans, is a non-profit organization recognized by the state of Illinois.[citation needed]

Match atmosphere is known for organized displays of stadium-wide support, particularly for matches of prime competitive importance. Call-and-response cheering amongst the crowd is commonplace. Fans at Toyota Park for Fire matches periodically choreograph tifo presentations both to show their pride and inspire the players on the field. Toyota Park remains one of the few American environments to conduct such fan-driven presentations on a large scale.

Their official mascot is Sparky, an anthropomorphic Dalmatian dog. Sparky is usually shown wearing the club's jersey but also arrives wearing firefighter attire.[29]

Club system[edit]

Rivalries[edit]

While the Fire have heated rivalries with a number of different MLS teams, Fire supporters of different ages will likely give different responses as to who the club's main rival is. The earliest Fire supporters would list Brimstone Cup rival FC Dallas as the Fire's nemesis, or Los Angeles Galaxy following heated playoff and cup matches with Dallas and L.A. in the league's early years.

After the Fire moved to the Eastern Conference, meetings with Dallas and LA became less frequent. Rivalries with DC United and New England Revolution were stoked following several thrilling playoff meetings. The Fire and Revolution are MLS' most frequent playoff matchup, meeting in the MLS Cup Playoffs 8 different times in 10 seasons from 2000 to 2009, splitting those encounters 4-4, with the Fire winning in 2000, 2003, 2008, and 2009. New England ended the Fire's playoff runs in 2002, 2005, 2006, and 2007. Newer rivals include Columbus Crew, who are the closest MLS team geographically to the Fire, and New York Red Bulls following the departure of former Fire head coach Juan Carlos Osorio to New York in 2007.

Broadcasting[edit]

During the 2012 season matches were televised locally by NBC Chicago Nonstop, channel 5.2., with eight games on Comcast SportsNet Chicago and one on WMAQ-TV. For the 2013 season, WPWR-TV will be the official television broadcast partner of the Chicago Fire with up to 23 of the Fire’s matches being shown live on My50 Chicago. Dan P. Kelly and Kevin Egan will be the broadcast team. In 2013 matches will be simulcast on radio by WLEY-FM. The radio announcer is Oscar Guzman. Select matches are also nationally broadcast on ESPN, ESPN2, UniMas, NBC Sports Network, or Univision via the league's television agreements.

Players and staff[edit]

Current roster[edit]

Last updated on June 30, 2014. Source: Chicago Fire Official Roster

No. Position Player Nation
3 Defender Jumper, HunterHunter Jumper      United States
4 Defender Soumaré, BakaryBakary Soumaré      Mali
5 Defender Palmer, LovelLovel Palmer      Jamaica
6 Defender Ianni, PatrickPatrick Ianni      United States
7 Midfielder Alex, Alex      Brazil
8 Midfielder Ward, GrantGrant Ward (on loan from Tottenham Hotspur)     England
9 Forward Magee, MikeMike Magee      United States
11 Midfielder Duka, DillyDilly Duka      United States
12 Midfielder Pause, LoganLogan Pause      United States
13 Defender Segares, GonzaloGonzalo Segares      Costa Rica
14 Midfielder Nyarko, PatrickPatrick Nyarko      Ghana
15 Forward Fondy, MatthewMatthew Fondy      United States
16 Defender Cochrane, GregGreg Cochrane      United States
18 Defender Kinney, StevenSteven Kinney      United States
19 Forward Shipp, HarryHarry Shipp (HGP)     United States
20 Midfielder Larentowicz, JeffJeff Larentowicz      United States
21 Midfielder Ritter, ChrisChris Ritter (HGP)     United States
22 Midfielder Watson, MattMatt Watson      England
23 Defender Franco, MarcoMarco Franco      United States
24 Forward Amarikwa, QuincyQuincy Amarikwa      United States
25 Goalkeeper Johnson, SeanSean Johnson      United States
28 Goalkeeper Reynish, KyleKyle Reynish      United States
30 Midfielder Cociș, RăzvanRăzvan Cociș      Romania
34 Defender Hurtado, Jhon KennedyJhon Kennedy Hurtado      Colombia
54 Midfielder Joya, BenjiBenji Joya (on loan from Santos Laguna)     United States

Out on loan[edit]

No. Position Player Nation
1 Goalkeeper Kann, AlecAlec Kann (on loan to Charlotte Eagles)     United States
27 Midfielder Pineda, VictorVictor Pineda (on loan to Indy Eleven)     United States
33 Forward Anangonó, Juan LuisJuan Luis Anangonó (DP; on loan to LDU Quito)     Ecuador

Notable former players[edit]

This list of former players includes those who received international caps while playing for the team or made significant contributions to the team in terms of appearances or goals while playing for the team. It is clearly not complete and all inclusive, and additions and refinements will continue to be made over time.

Head coaches[edit]

Club Presidents[edit]

  • Robert Sanderman (1997–00)
  • Peter Wilt (2001–05)
  • John Guppy (2005–08)
  • Javier León (2008), (2010) (both interim)
  • Dave Greeley (2008–10)
  • Julian Posada (2010–12)

General Managers[edit]

Technical Directors[edit]

Directors of Player Personnel[edit]

Assistant Coaches[edit]

Team Physicians[edit]

  • Dr. Preston Wolin (1998–08)
  • Dr. Gilberto Muñoz (1999–)

Ring of Fire[edit]

The "Ring of Fire" was established in 2003 by Chicago Fire Soccer Club and the Chicago Fire Alumni Association as permanent tribute to honor those who have made the club proud and successful over its history. Aside from the initial member Piotr Nowak, only "Ring of Fire" members can select new inductees, and no more than one can be selected any year. Names and numbers (if applicable) are prominently displayed inside Toyota Park.

There were no inductees in 2008, 2010, or 2011. In 2008, the members voted to honor two recently deceased fans (supporter leaders Dan Parry and Brandon Kitchens) but were overruled by club Chairman Andrew Hauptman.[33] Parry and Kitchens were later made members of the Wall of Honor, a special recognition for Fire fans. In addition to Parry and Kitchens, the late Fire fans Euan McLean and Al Hack have been inducted into the Wall of Honor as of 2011.[34] C.J. Brown was expected to be honored in 2011, but a new rule was established that inductees must have been away from the club for at least a calendar year.[35] Brown, at the time an assistant head coach at Real Salt Lake, was officially inducted at the halftime ceremony during the home game vs. Real Salt Lake in Toyota Park on May 9, 2012.[36][37]

Achievements[edit]

Championships[edit]

Other[edit]

Record[edit]

Year-by-year[edit]

Season Regular Season Season
Record
MLS Cup Playoffs U.S. Open Cup CONCACAF
Champions League
1998 2nd West, 3rd overall 20–12–0 Won Conference Semifinals (Colorado Rapids 2-0)
Won Conference Finals (Los Angeles 2-0)
Won MLS Cup (D.C. United 2-0)
Champions Did not qualify
1999 3rd West, 4th overall 18–14–0 Lost Conference Semifinals (Dallas Burn 1-2) Round of 16 3rd place
2000 1st Central, 2nd overall 17–9–6 Won Quarterfinals (New England Revolution 2-1)
Won Semifinals (New York Red Bulls 2-1)
Lost MLS Cup (Kansas City Wizards 0-1)
Champions Did not qualify
2001 1st Central, 2nd overall 16–6–5 Won Quarterfinals (Dallas Burn 2-1)
Lost Semifinals (Los Angeles Galaxy 1-2)
Semifinals Not held
2002 3rd East, 7th overall 11–13–4 Lost Conference Semifinals (New England Revolution 1-2) Round of 16 Quarterfinals
2003 1st East, 1st overall
Won Supporters' Shield
15–7–8 Won Conference Semifinals (D.C. United 4-0)
Won Conference Finals (New England Revolution 1-0)
Lost MLS Cup (San Jose Earthquakes 2-4)
Champions Did not qualify
2004 5th East, 10th overall 8–13–9 Did not qualify Runners-up Semifinals
2005 3rd East, 4th overall 15–13–4 Won Conference Semifinals (D.C. United 4-0)
Lost Conference Finals (New England Revolution 0-1)
Semifinals Did not qualify
2006 3rd East, 4th overall 13–11–8 Lost Conference Semifinals (New England Revolution 2-4) Champions Did not qualify
2007 4th East, 7th overall 10–10–10 Won Conference Semifinals (D.C. United 3-2)
Lost Conference Finals (New England Revolution 0-1)
Round of 16 Did not qualify
2008 2nd East, 3rd overall 13–10–7 Won Conference Semifinals (New England Revolution 3-0)
Lost Conference Finals (Columbus Crew 1-2)
Quarterfinals Did not qualify
2009 2nd East, 5th overall 11–7–12 Won Conference Semifinals (New England Revolution 3-2)
Lost Conference Finals (Real Salt Lake 4-5)
Round of 16 Did not qualify
2010 4th East, 10th overall 9–12–9 Did not qualify Round of 16 Did not qualify
2011 6th East, 11th overall 9–9–16 Did not qualify Runners-up Did not qualify
2012 4th East, 6th overall 17–11–6 Lost Knockout Round (Houston Dynamo 1-2) Round of 32 Did not qualify
2013 6th East, 12th overall 14–13–7 Did not qualify Semifinals Did not qualify

Source: MLSsoccer.com

Club records[edit]

MLS regular season only, through 2011

  • All-Time regular season record: 185–146–98

International Results[edit]

International Tournaments
Tournament Finish
1999 CONCACAF Champions' Cup 3rd Place Match
2002 CONCACAF Champions' Cup Quarterfinals
2004 CONCACAF Champions' Cup Semifinals
2009 North American SuperLiga Final
2010 Sister Cities International Cup Group Stage
2010 North American SuperLiga Group Stage
Top 10 CONCACAF Finishes
Year Final CONCACAF Ranking
1999 3rd
2002 6th
2004 4th
Draws
Year Competition Club Nation Result
1999 CONCACAF Champions Cup L.D. Alajuelense  Costa Rica D 1-1
2000 Friendly Deportivo Toluca  Mexico D 3–3
2007 Friendly Celtic F.C.  Scotland D 1–1
2008 Friendly Wisła Kraków  Poland D 0–0
2009 North American SuperLiga Tigres UANL  Mexico D 1–1
2012 Friendly Santos Laguna  Mexico D 2–2
Wins
Year Competition Club Nation Result
1998 Friendly Pumas UNAM  Mexico W 1–0
1999 Friendly Legia Warsaw  Poland W 3–2
1999 Friendly Derby County F.C.  England W 1–0
1999 CONCACAF Champions Cup Joe Public F.C.  Trinidad and Tobago W 2–0
2000 Friendly Hamburger SV  Germany W 5–1
2002 CONCACAF Champions Cup C.S.D. Municipal  Guatemala W 1–0
2002 CONCACAF Champions Cup C.S.D. Municipal  Guatemala W 2–0
2002 CONCACAF Champions Cup Monarcas Morelia  Mexico W 2–1
2004 CONCACAF Champions Cup San Juan Jabloteh  Trinidad and Tobago W 4–0
2004 CONCACAF Champions Cup Deportivo Saprissa  Costa Rica W 2–1
2007 Friendly KS Cracovia  Poland W 1–0
2008 Friendly Everton  England W 2–0
2009 North American SuperLiga San Luis F.C.  Mexico W 1–0
2010 North American SuperLiga Pumas UNAM  Mexico W 1–0
2012 Preseason Real España  Honduras W 3--1
2014 Desert Diamond Cup Chivas Rayadas de Guadalajara  Mexico W 2--0

Team awards[edit]

Year Team MVP Golden Boot* Defender of the Year
Winner Goals
1998 Poland Piotr Nowak United States Ante Razov 10 Czech Republic Luboš Kubík
1999 Czech Republic Luboš Kubík United States Ante Razov 14 Czech Republic Luboš Kubík
2000 Poland Piotr Nowak United States Ante Razov 18 United States Carlos Bocanegra
2001 Poland Piotr Nowak United States Eric Wynalda 10 United States Zach Thornton
2002 United States Zach Thornton United States Ante Razov 14 United States Zach Thornton
2003 United States Chris Armas United States Ante Razov 14 United States Carlos Bocanegra
2004 United States Henry Ring Jamaica Damani Ralph 11 United States Jim Curtin
2005 Honduras Ivan Guerrero United States Chris Rolfe 8 Honduras Ivan Guerrero
2006 Costa Rica Andy Herron Costa Rica Andy Herron 9 United States CJ Brown
2007 Mexico Cuauhtémoc Blanco United States Chad Barrett 7 Costa Rica Gonzalo Segares
2008 United States Jon Busch United States Chris Rolfe 9 Mali Bakary Soumare
2009 United States Brian McBride United States Brian McBride 7 Colombia Wilman Conde
2010 United States Logan Pause Guatemala Marco Pappa 7 United States CJ Brown
2011 Ghana Dominic Oduro Ghana Dominic Oduro 12 United States Cory Gibbs
2012 United States Chris Rolfe United States Chris Rolfe 8 Germany Arne Friedrich
2013 United States Mike Magee United States Mike Magee 15 United States Sean Johnson

Source: http://www.chicago-fire.com/history/honors

*Golden Boot is the team leader in goals (regular season games only).

Average attendance[edit]

Regular season/Play-offs
  • 1998: 17,887/22,677
  • 1999: 16,016/8,197
  • 2000: 13,387/8,431
  • 2001: 16,388/11,239
  • 2002: 12,922/9,434
  • 2003: 14,005/14,961
  • 2004: 17,153/missed playoffs
  • 2005: 17,238/11,493
  • 2006: 14,088/10,217
  • 2007: 16,490/17,834
  • 2008: 17,034/17,312
  • 2009: 14,689/21,626
  • 2010: 15,814/missed playoffs
  • 2011: 14,553/missed playoffs
  • 2012: 16,407/10,923
  • 2013: 15,228[38]/missed playoffs

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Fire Fire Peter Wilt, Fans Protest". chicagoist.com. Retrieved December 31, 2007. 
  2. ^ "Hauptman to Purchase Chicago Fire". Thesportsbizblog.blogspot.com. July 12, 2007. Retrieved December 3, 2011. 
  3. ^ "The owner that won't let go". soccerbyives.net. 
  4. ^ "Fire sack Hamlett". fifa.com. 
  5. ^ "Monday Kickaround". washingtonpost.com. 
  6. ^ "Fire, CLDC Part Ways". 
  7. ^ "FIRE NAMES FRANK KLOPAS HEAD COACH". 
  8. ^ "Fire reacquire forward Chris Rolfe". 
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  10. ^ "2012 Regular Season Standings". 
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  15. ^ "Chicago Fire Defender Arne Friedrich Announces Retirement". chicago-fire.com. June 23, 2013. Retrieved June 23, 2013. 
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  18. ^ "Chicago Fire Names Frank Yallop as New Head Coach and Director of Soccer". chicago-fire.com. October 31, 2013. 
  19. ^ "Marco Di Vaio, Robbie Keane & Mike Magee vie for Volkswagen MVP as MLS reveals award finalists". mlssoccer.com. November 20, 2013. 
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  21. ^ "RELEASE: Chicago Fire Forward Mike Magee Wins 2013 Volkswagen MLS Most Valuable Player Award". chicago-fire.com. December 5, 2013. 
  22. ^ "Chicago Fire name longtime Columbus Crew fixture Brian Bliss as new technical director". MLSsoccer.com. December 6, 2013. 
  23. ^ "Chicago Fire Soccer Club Adds Clint Mathis to Coaching Staff". Chicago-Fire.com. January 31, 2014. 
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