Campbell SuperDraft

Chicago Fire get set for Friday's 2017 MLS SuperDraft

With MLS SuperDraft week finally upon us, the Chicago Fire soccer operations staff has gathered in Los Angeles to take part in the annual league event that kicks off this Friday, Jan. 13 at 2 pm CT (live stream available via MLSsoccer.com).

To add to what has already been an active offseason from a player acquisition standpoint, the Fire additionally hold the third and 11th overall picks in the first round of this year's draft. That isn't entirely dissimilar to 2016, in which the club ended up selecting in spots four and 12 in the first round after a draft day trade with New York City FC.

Heading into this year's festivities, general manager Nelson Rodríguez and his staff have outlined an approach that he feels will allow them to get the most out of their two first round selections.

"We have our plan built out for the SuperDraft," Rodríguez said, speaking on a conference call with local media this afternoon. "We have contingencies and we have options built within that plan. We think there’s a depth of talent that we feel very good about our selections at No. 3 and No. 11. Of course, we will also consider all options made available to us. That might even include trading up or trading down."

Last year's first round picks - defenders Brandon Vincent (fourth overall) and Jonathan Campbell (12th overall) - ended up playing a combined 59 MLS regular season matches for the Fire. Adding players that similarly challenge those already under contract in Chicago will be an emphasis on Friday afternoon.

"We don’t go into it with a preconceived notion, other than our intention is to build competition on this roster for every spot such that training makes us all better," Rodríguez added.

While it remains unclear which certain players or position groups he and head coach Veljko Paunovic will be targeting on Friday, there has been no shortage of opportunities to get familiar with this year's crop of SuperDraft eligible players. The MLS Player Combine has been in full swing this week, and will wrap up tomorrow with a final doubleheader played among this year's crop of combine invitees.

Click below to brush up which players are trending up and what to be on the lookout for come draft day with a roundup of recent takes and tools from MLSsoccer.com:

In the meantime - with the club yet again set to make a pair of high selections in the SuperDraft - check out the chart below to brush up on Chicago’s history of first-round picks:

Year Name Overall Pick Games Played
for Chicago (MLS Regular Season)
2016 Jack Harrison (F) No. 1 0 (Traded to NYCFC for 2016 fourth overall selection)
2016 Brandon Vincent (D) No. 4 26 (active)
2016 Jonathan Campbell (D) No. 12 33 (active)
2015 Matt Polster (M) No. 7 57 (active)
2014 Marco Franco (D) No. 13 0
2013 No first-round pick    
2012 Austin Berry (D) No. 9 62
2011 Jalil Anibaba (D) No. 9 96
2010 Corben Bone (M) No. 13 18
2009 No first-round pick    
2008 Patrick Nyarko (M) No. 7 196
2008 Dominic Cervi (GK) No. 12 0
2007 Bakary Soumare (D) No. 2 111 (two stints)
2007 Jerson Monteiro (F) No. 8 5
2006 Calen Carr (F) No. 10 82
2005 Chad Barrett (F) No. 3 82
2005 Jack Stewart (D) No. 10 14
2004 Scott Buete (D) No. 9 21
2003 Nate Jaqua (F) No. 3 92
2002 Kelly Gray (D/M) No. 5 84
2002 Billy Sleeth (D) No. 10 13
2001 No first-round pick    
2000 Carlos Bocanegra (D) No. 4 87
1999 Evan Whitfield (D/M) * No. 11 103
1998 Ritchie Kotschau (D) * No. 2 28
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