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26 March 2:11 pm

Here at the Fire we love Twitter in more ways than one. It's a great source of communication, but also the only place to find #JumperThoughts.

Fire defender Hunter Jumper is a man of infinite wisdom, and his tweets reflect that. So without further ado, I give you #JumperThoughts Vol. 1... Enjoy!

20 March 10:07 am

We're happy to introduce a new video series to Chicago-Fire.com called "Both Sides of the Badge".

This week we talk to Daniel Paladini about his devotion to the club's supporters and ask him to do his best Frank Klopas impression: 

20 March 9:01 am

If It seems like its Goalkeeper Week here on Chicago-Fire.com, well maybe it is... Sean Johnson is with the U.S. Men's National Team, meaning Paolo Tornaghi is the starter on Sunday, making way for Alec Kann to officially sign with the club on Tuesday in order to back him up.

I got a lot of quotes from goalkeepers (and their coach) the past few days... It'd be a shame if they went to waste so I've included some of the more interesting ones here...

Chicago FIre goalkeeping coach Aron Hyde

On having two returning goalkeepers for the first time since 2009

"Its never easy in MLS with the salary cap to maintain players year-to-year. In previous years we’ve looked to experienced guys to guide Sean along in his development and this year we didn’t need that. We’ve got a very young goalkeeping group – its probably the youngest in the league. Sean’s not a young goalkeeper anymore –he’s at nearly 80 games in his career. We don’t have any issues there anymore. Obviously he can get a little more continuity in the group and Paolo is a good goalkeeper and is more than capable of stepping in. He didn’t let the side down last year and we’re positive and optimistic he’ll do the same on Sunday."

On Alec Kann's attitude as the third goalkeeper

"He’s coming in willing to learn. He has a good attitude, he works hard – you can’t fault him for anything there. He’s a good guy to work with. He’s been good with the other two and you hope he realizes he’s here to push and he wants to play as well. He has to be ready."

Chicago Fire goalkeeper Paolo Tornaghi

On communicating with a changing backline

"Its important when everyone steps on the field to have a positive performance. I thought our defensive line was very good on Saturday. We work together every day so to me it doesn’t matter who the first 11 are, all the players train and stay focused to be ready for Sunday."

19 March 5:03 pm

So if you're like me, you were watching Sunday's SuperClasico between LA and Chivas to get a better understanding of the Fire's upcoming opponents.

Around the 40th minute, you were sort of shocked to see the Goats Joaquin Velazquez sent off by referee Ricardo Salazar for this play…

If anything, Colin Clark could have received a card on the play but nonetheless, Chivas was forced to play the remaining 50 minutes a man down and still found away to earn a 1-1 draw against the reigning MLS Cup champs. 

Flash forward to today and an Independent Review panel has rightly rescinded the red card and the one-game suspension that came along with it for this Sunday's match vs. the Fire.

This is the second time in MLS history that a red card has been rescinded. The New England Revolution's Fernando Cardenas saw his red card taken away after he was sent off in a 2-1 loss to Seattle last May.

What do you think? Is it good that the league is willing to rescind red cards when obvious mistakes are being made? Chime in below. 

18 March 9:43 am

Twitter is great for many reasons. Today's its awesome because we got an update on how the team's star center back is doing on his hamstring rehab in Germany...

See you next Tuesday, Arne!

14 March 10:37 am

We're having a lot of fun with GIFs lately. Since its #RivalryWeek in MLS, we thought we'd do one on Sporting KC coach Peter Vermes being mad. 

Also, props to @ricecakeonfire for tweeting me his compilation of the many faces of Peter Vermes:
 

11 March 12:04 pm

A stroll through my Google Alerts this morning leads me to wish a big congrats to former Fire captain Chris Armas on his induction with the inaugural class into the Long Island Soccer Hall of Fame this past Saturday.

The second captain in club history, the Brentwood, N.Y. product racked up 273 competitve appearances (4th all-time) along with 12 goals and 50 assists (2nd all-time) in his 10 seasons in Chicago. He joins C.J. Brown and Zach Thornton as the only three players in club history to be part of all six domestic championships and is one of seven men enshrined in the Ring of Fire.

PERUSE: TrueCar Player Registry

I did some further digging and found out that although he was unable to be in attendance at Saturday's ceremony, Fire owner and Long Island native Andrew Hautpman helped support the event by purchasing a table at the dinner and had this letter read to honor Armas' career achievements and contributions to the Chicago Fire Soccer Club:

Greetings Fellow Long Islanders –

I wanted to extend heartfelt congratulations to Shep Messing, Paul LeSueur, Kim Wyant and Chris Armas for your induction into the Long Island Soccer Player Hall of Fame. Your contributions to the sport of soccer and to Long Island have helped shape the game and our community in positive and powerful ways.

I apologize for not being able to attend tonight’s event (ironically, it's the home opener for my beloved Chicago Fire!).  Speaking of which, I would especially like to acknowledge and thank the 'one and only' Chris Armas for his efforts with the Chicago Fire Soccer Club. Chris is the type of individual who has always done things the right way. His industriousness, talent, attention to detail and spirit has always separated him from his competitors on-and-off-the-field.

Having also grown up playing soccer on Long Island (in Smithtown where my mother designed all of the patches for the Smithtown Traveling Soccer Club), I immediately bonded and felt a closeness with Chris, not to mention having also admired his approach to the game. Chris is as hard working a player you will ever encounter and is perhaps the best holding midfielder of his generation. Despite winning five domestic trophies, being a five-time Best XI midfielder and earning 66 appearances with the U.S. Men’s National Team, Chris remains humble and true to his Long Island roots.

Before owning the Fire, I always looked at Chris as someone who exemplified all of the characteristics I valued in a soccer player.  Once I was leading the club, I realized that Chris exemplifies all of the characteristics I value in a person. Chris is a trusting and caring individual who treats everyone with the utmost respect and tries to do the right thing...always. Above all, he is a committed family man and a wonderful human being.

Chris, thanks for your spectacular contributions to the game of soccer, to Long Island and to the Chicago Fire Soccer Club. I’m am truly honored to have gotten to know you and consider you a trusted colleague and a friend.

Again, congratulations to all of those being honored tonight  -- I look forward to seeing the Hall of Fame grow from strength to strength.

Best regards,

Andrew Hauptman 

Hopefully Saturday's recognition for Chris isn't the only Hall of Fame he enters in 2013. Armas, who made 66 appearances and scored two goals for the U.S. Men's National team, was once again on the ballot for the U.S. Soccer Hall of Fame this year.

The announcement on the 2013 class is set to come later this month...

11 March 10:17 am

Fire Homegrown forward Kellen Gulley has headed to Georgia to begin training with the NASL’s Atlanta Silverbacks this week.

Fire head coach Frank Klopas mentioned throughout preseason that the team was looking to send the 18-year-old forward out on loan this year and it appears that the club is working towards an agreement with the second division side.

Signed from the Mississippi Fire Juniors in August 2011, Gulley has yet to make his competitive debut for the club. The potential move should serve him well in gaining playing time as he continues to develop. 

Coached by former FC Dallas head coach Brian Haynes, the Silverbacks open their 2013 NASL Spring campaign vs. Fort Lauderdale Strikers on April 13 at Silverbacks Park. 

10 March 11:42 am

Klopas on 1-0 Loss to New England

 

Nyarko reacts to 1-0 loss to New England

 

Austin Berry on 1-0 loss to New England

 

Gonzalo Segares on 1-0 loss to New England

09 March 3:04 pm

Select shots from Saturday's match vs. New England

 

officialfiresoccer's 3-9-13 Chicago Fire vs New England Revolution album on Photobucket