Dilly Duka and Brendan King latest to play Fire numbers game

Midfielders Duka and King lock in their squad numbers for 2013

So far this preseason we’ve seen a total of five new squad numbers or changes chosen by Fire first team players. Today we have two more…

Having joined the team via trade from Columbus just over a week ago, midfielder Dilly Duka has laid claim to the number eight shirt with the Fire.

“I’ve worn 7 and 11 before but neither were available here,” Duka said. “When I picked it, my main thought was to try and get a traditional soccer number and its one I’ve never worn before so I guess you can say its sort of a new beginning for me as I come to the Fire.”

NOTE: All-Time Number 8’s in Chicago Fire history: Diego Gutierrez (1998-1999), Hristo Stoitchkov (2000-2002), Damani Ralph (2003-2004), Lubos Reiter (2005), Diego Gutierrez (2006-2008), Peter Lowry (2010), Freddie Ljungberg (2010), Dominic Oduro (2011-2012)

Doubling up from Duka’s number eight, midfielder Brendan King has chosen number 16 after his first choice also wasn’t available.

“There weren’t a whole bunch of numbers available,” said the Naperville product. “My go-to number is usually 17 but I didn’t think I could pry that away from Chris [Rolfe].

“Sixteen is close to 17 so that might be one of the reasons I picked it. I’ve never worn the number 16 before at any level so it’ll be a new experience for me.

When reminded that the last Fire player to wear the #16 shirt was Guatemalan midfielder Marco Pappa, King responded, “Those are certainly big shoes to fill.”

NOTE: All-Time Number 16’s in Chicago Fire history: Josh Wolff (1998-2002), Andy Williams (2003-2004), Will John (2005), Brian Plotkin (2006-2007), Marco Pappa (2008-2012).

PHOTOS: The 8's and 16's in Chicago Fire History

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