Fire Continue to Shape Roster at MLS Superdraft

A weekly account of all things Fire

Sherjill MacDonald

Photo Credit: 
Brian Kersey Chicago Fire

CHICAGO FIRE CONTINUE PREPARATIONS FOR 2013 MLS SEASON
The Chicago Fire continue their preparations for the 2013 MLS season with the SuperDraft set for Thursday, Jan. 17 at 11:00 a.m. CT in Indianapolis, Ind. The first overall selection will be broadcast live on ESPN SportsCenter. The entire draft is available live on www.Chicago-Fire.com, ESPN3, ESPNFC, MLSsoccer.com and YouTube.
 
The Fire currently hold the 11th overall pick in the first round. In 2012, the Fire selected Austin Berry ninth overall out of the University of Louisville. Berry went on to appear in 28 consecutive MLS Regular Season Matches en route to 2012 MLS Rookie of the Year honors.
 
Seven of the Fire’s starters, goalkeeper Sean Johnson, defenders Gonzalo Segares, Austin Berry and Jalil Anibaba, midfielders Logan Pause and Patrick Nyarko, and forward Chris Rolfe were acquired through the SuperDraft. Twelve players on the current Fire roster got their professional start through the MLS SuperDraft. Midfielder Michael Videira was selected by the New England Revolution in the 2008 SuperDraft but elected to sign with Scottish Premier League side Hamilton Academical. Also selected in the 2008 SuperDraft was Ghanaian winger Patrick Nyarko, who as the seventh overall pick, stands as the highest pick by the Men in Red on the current roster. Wells Thompson is the highest drafted player on the current roster, as the New England Revolution selected the Wake Forest product fifth overall in the 2007 edition.
 
Fire fans can join Section 8 Chicago at the SuperDraft by hopping on the bus to Indianapolis for just $10. The MLS SuperDraft is being held at the Indiana Convention Center (100 South Capitol Ave., Indianapolis, IN 46225) beginning at 11:00 a.m. CT. Admission to the SuperDraft is free.
 
MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER UNVEILS FULL 2013 SEASON SCHEDULE
The Chicago Fire Soccer Club, in conjunction with Major League Soccer and its national television partners, unveiled the 2013 regular season schedule last Wednesday. The Fire are slated to appear in a total of 16 nationally televised broadcasts throughout its 16th season of MLS play. The Fire kick off the 2013 MLS campaign with they visit two-time defending MLS Cup champions LA Galaxy on Sunday, March 3 at 4:00 p.m. CT (Univision). The Fire’s full schedule can be found at www.Chicago-Fire.com/schedule.
 
The Men in Red host Opening Night at Toyota Park when they welcome the New England Revolution on Saturday, March 9 at 6:30 p.m. CT (NBC Sports Network). Chicago Fire Season Tickets and #cf97withdrawals Winter Packs, which give fans the opportunity to witness the Men in Red in action on Opening Day while donning the four Fire hats and four pairs of Fire gloves included in the pack, are available by calling 1-888-MLS-FIRE, via Ticketmaster or by heading to the club’s official website at www.Chicago-Fire.com.
 
Single game tickets to Chicago Fire matches will go on sale via Ticketmaster starting Monday, Jan. 28 at noon. Only select locations will be available via this sale.
 
Season Ticket Holder exchanges will begin Monday, February 18.
 
CHICAGO FIRE UNVEIL TRUECAR CHICAGO FIRE PLAYER REGISTRY
The Chicago Fire are pleased to unveil the TrueCar Chicago Fire Player Registry. In an effort to continue the club’s connection to its past, the registry presents historical statistics of all players that have played at least one competitive match for the Chicago Fire Soccer Club.
 
TrueCar, the official car pricing information site of the Chicago Fire, is a company that loves data. In a world where car pricing information is everywhere and from more sources than you can possibly study, TrueCar collects data and analyzes the market so that customers don't have to. Harnessing the power of this information is what allows you to recognize a fair deal and become, essentially, a car-buying expert.
 
Combining these passions of Chicago Fire history and data, TrueCar is bringing you the first all-encompassing Player Registry in Major League Soccer. The registry presents historical statistics of all players that have played at least one match for the Chicago Fire. Statistics are broken down by All Competitions, MLS Regular Season, MLS Cup Playoffs, Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and International competition (CONCACAF and SuperLiga) matches.
 
FIRE ACADEMY PRODUCT COLLIN FERNANDEZ SELECTED FOR U.S. U-17 MEN’S RESIDENCEY PROGRAM
Chicago Fire U-16 midfielder and forward Collin Fernandez has been selected to the U.S. U-17 Men’s Residency Program in Bradenton, Fla. Fernandez, who is currently attending Downers Grove North High School, will be part of the 31-player Spring Semester Residency Program selected by U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team Head Coach Richie Williams.
 
The U.S. will be participating in the 2013 CONCACAF U-17 Championship in from April 6-19 Panama City, Panama, which serves as the qualifying tournament for the 2013 FIFA U-17 World Cup for the CONCACAF region.
 
Since its inception, more than 300 players, including U.S. Men’s National Team stars Landon Donovan, Michael Bradley, DaMarcus Beasley and current Fire first team members and Homegrown players Victor Pineda and Kellen Gulley, have taken part in the Residency Program,
 
CHICAGO FIRE TO MAKE THREE STOPS DURING 2013 PRESEASON
The Chicago Fire will make three stops ahead of the club’s 16th MLS season. Fire players will arrive at Toyota Park on Friday, Jan. 18 and undergo two days of medical exams before departing for the first leg of the club’s preseason camp on Sunday, Jan. 20 in Ave Maria, Fla. During the 10-day camp on the campus of Ave Maria University, the Fire will play preseason friendlies against Florida Gulf Coast University on Sunday, Jan. 27 at 3:00 p.m. CT before heading to the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. to take on the Columbus Crew on Wednesday, Jan. 30 at 10:00 a.m. CT.
 
The Fire will then head to Ventura, Calif. from Feb. 2-10 for the second leg of preseason. The Men in Red will close out their time on the West Coast with a match against the 2012 MLS Supporters Shield winners San Jose Earthquakes at Oxnard College with date and time to be determined.
 
For the third straight year, the Fire will close out preseason from Feb. 13 – 24 in Charleston, S.C. as part of the 2013 Carolina Challenge Cup where they will face 2012 MLS Cup Finalists Houston Dynamo, 2012 USL Pro Champions Charleston Battery and fellow MLS side Vancouver Whitecaps FC.  
 
Tickets for the 2013 Carolina Challenge Cup are available at (843) 971-GOAL (4625) or www.charlestonbattery.com. Information on preseason match livestreams on Chicago-Fire.com will be released at a later date.
 
The club’s full preseason schedule can be found here.
 
FIRE IN THE NEWS
 
Fire season begins March 2; home opener March 9  - Chicago Tribune - January 9, 2013
http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/soccer/chi-chicago-fire-season-to-b...
 
Early foes won’t be easy kickings - Seth Gruen - Chicago Sun-Times - January 9, 2013
http://www.suntimes.com/sports/soccer/fire/17483994-626/early-foes-wont-...
 
Fire preps for Combine, SuperDraft - Len Ziehm - CSNChicago.com - January 8, 2013
http://www.csnchicago.com/soccer-chicago-fire/news/Fire-preps-for-Combin...
 
Starting spot still not guaranteed for Lindpere in Chicago - Anthony Zilis - MLSsoccer.com - January 8, 2013
http://www.mlssoccer.com/news/article/2013/01/08/starting-spot-still-not...
 
Lindpere Speaks; Full MLS Schedule Release Wed. - Ryan Sealock - Hot Time in Old Town - January 7, 2013
http://www.hottimeinoldtown.com/2013/1/7/3848756/lindpere-speaks-full-ml...
 
JEFF CRANDALL FEATURES ON CHICAGO-FIRE.COM
 
Introducing the TrueCar Player Registry – January 14, 2013
http://www.chicago-fire.com/news/2013/01/introducing-truecar-player-regi...

One-on-One: Klopas on the SuperDraft – January 11, 2013
http://www.chicago-fire.com/news/2013/01/one-one-klopas-superdraft
 
Mock Draft Roundup: Take One – January 10, 2013
http://www.chicago-fire.com/blog/post/2013/01/10/mock-draft-roundup-take...
 
Coming off English training stints,  Johnson excited for 2013 preseason – January 8, 2013
http://www.chicago-fire.com/news/2013/01/coming-english-training-stints-johnson-excited-2013-preseason