Transfer window yields nothing but Fire still hopeful on Jones

The Fire needed to add reinforcements before the transfer deadline yesterday but weren't able to get a deal done. Frank Yallop told reporters this morning that a deal fell through at the last minute when the club they had been working with backed out. "We had something really close, that basically in the last couple of days sort of unraveled. It would have helped us so that was very disappointing," said the Fire's Head Coach and Director of Soccer.

Yallop did not want to identify the player stating that, "It wasn't the player, it wasn't financial stuff, the club decided not to sell". The player in question appears to be Lanús' Silvio Romero, who played in a match in Tokyo yesterday morning. Lanús, an Argentine First Division club is coached by former Columbus Crew playmaker Guillermo Barros Schelotto. Lanús apparently decided against the move due to an injury to another forward and Romero's recent good run of form.

Without a move for a forward during the window, other possible transactions have also been scuttled. That doesn't mean Chicago is done making moves however. "What we've got now is the free transfer guys. Once the window closes it closed. We felt we had this deal done, we verbally agreed, all the paperwork was done. Brian (Bliss) sent it over and it was ready to go and he gets a phone call that it's off," said Yallop.

With that transaction and possibly others trailing it off the table, the Fire are still hopeful that Jermaine Jones will join the club this summer. "The Jones thing is still out there. Once he signs with the league, or if he signs with the league, then we've got to figure out what we can do to get him into the club. I'm sure the other clubs will be interested so we have to figure out how. That's not going to be an easy process. We're still working on it and trying to get something resolved," he explained.

While the Fire is turning their attention elsewhere for reinforcements, Yallop also insinuated there may have been other deals discussed with the Argentine club last night but those were fruitless as well. "We've got other targets we're going to talk about this morning. Last night was our last chance of getting over with Lanús but we just said no, we're not doing anything," he said.

When asked if waiting for Jermaine Jones to decide on his destination has handcuffed the Fire in terms of player acquisitions, Yallop wouldn't go that far but did restate his intention not to bring in players just for the sake of making a move. "It's not handcuffed. The players that we were bringing in were real quality but I don't want to get into a point where we just get anybody in," he said. "That's what we don't want. As much as I want to get new players in and the team obviously needs it to push on, and the fans want to see it, I really feel I want to make the right move for this club and if that means not getting anybody in this window maybe it works out for the better rather than getting somebody you might not want next year."

The club still seems committed to bringing in Jones but MLS' murky allocation rules won't make it simple. "We want to keep a very close eye on the Jones deal (with the league) and see if we can bring him to Chicago. We've had good talks with him and the agent. It's very positive but we've got other people in front of us that have a chance of getting him." Yallop explained that once Jones signs with the league, as all players do, the Fire may need to move up in the allocation order to get him.

To make things even murkier, Yallop confirmed that the league now employs another form of player acquisition for Designated Players in addition to the standard form of allocation that we are all aware of. "There's a DP allocation and a regular allocation," he said. "The DP one, DC are on top of and the regular one is Columbus. We're not sure where it unfolds. It depends on the salary and stuff like that but none of those two clubs will take him but there are people ahead of us at the moment. It's not an easy process".

How and when exactly the league would deploy the nebulus "DP of a certain threshold" loophole that was added to this year's roster rules is another story. It's possible Jones could fit into that category. But it's MLS, so maybe not.

Yallop also addressed the frustration of fans who were expecting a move before midnight yesterday. "I can see where they're coming from. I just want to make sure we make the right moves and the correct moves," he reiterated. "I don't want to get where we just take anybody because the fans want us to or I want to get someone in. If there's not quite the right deal or the right move to get the club forward, I'd rather not do it".

"We'd like to add a player or two but it's kind of pending on the next few days. We hope there will be something from either MLS or Jermaine's people," said Yallop.


  • Yallop wasn't ready to throw in the towel on 2014 despite the current standings. "I've never conceded anytime. We've been pretty close in a lot of games. We were obviously not good enough to win those games, especially at home but a run of games gets us right back in the picture. Never give up on the season because it can change quickly". He did acknowledge that the team needed to start winning at home immediately.
  • Patrick Nyarko is working on the side but is still not participating in full training. He could still be a few weeks away from returning.
  • Sanna Nyassi is training and should be ready in "the next couple of days." He's not likely to be ready for Sunday but could be available for the US Open Cup semi-final on August 13.
  • Mike Magee did not train today due to a sore foot and tightness in his calf. Lovel Palmer also did not participate due to a slight groin issue. Yallop added that if this was a day before the game they would be training and expects they will be available Sunday.

Filed under: 2014 Regular Season

Tags: Chicago Fire


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  • Bring up the academy kids.

  • In reply to Bumsteer:

    Well, attacking midfielder Collin Fernandez is training with the team. He is expected to be the next homegrown signing.

  • Sounds like no plan b and we rid ourselves of good players anibaba,berry,Rolfe for cap space we aren't using.. Awesome..

  • So where do we stand in the special "DP allocation"? I know that everyone is getting frustrated with the club, but there are moments where I'm more frustrated with the league. It seems like they are doing all they can do to avoid transparency. At times it feels like the league is rigged, or at least has the potential. I hope that with the new CBA some of these allocation lists (regular and secret) get removed (wishful thinking, I know).

  • In reply to jhholda:

    If it's reverse order of 2013 finish and DC has first dibs, then it's 8th for the Fire.

  • This is MLS. If Jones wants to go to a club that will pay him what he thinks he's worth, the league will make it happen.

    Ives speculated on his podcast today that with Landon announcing his retirement that there could be room for JJ at the Galaxy. He thinks that the LA thing would be attractive to jj so he can hang out with charlie sheen more.

  • In reply to Roti2000:

    There are two holes in the Jones to LA theory. One is that he would have to play at a discount this year in order to land in LA and he doesn't strike me as a guy looking to take less money anywhere.
    Two is fact that LA tried to skirt the system in a similar way with the Klejstan deal and Arena claims "forces" within the league blocked it. That was a loan deal with a back end DP deal which is a little different but still a back door way around the cap rules. Other teams may try to block it as well.
    Jones will go wherever the biggest offer is.

  • In reply to Guillermo Rivera:

    Looks like competition for Jones' signature is coming in the form of the New England Revolution (insert Prince waving his hand over his eye here). Think they'll offer up more money than Andy H? Or is this just to drive the price up from the Fire?

  • In reply to c0quito18:

    I think Jones is headed for the place that will pony up the most money. The thought of a bidding war between Hauptman and Kraft is quite a picture.

  • In reply to Guillermo Rivera:

    I think a bidding war between Hauptman and Kraft can only go down.

  • Another young player goes out on loan for playing time. Marco Franco is headed to USLPro.

  • Weekend picks

    Los Angeles over San Jose
    Philadelphia over Montreal
    Toronto FC and Columbus draw
    FC Dallas over Colorado
    Real Salt Lake over DC
    Portland over Chivas USA
    Chicago and New York draw
    Vancouver and Sporting KC draw
    Seattle over Houston


  • So any word on free agents not named Jones? Also what is the point of bringing in a free agent right now? I mean if they are free agents they probably aren't training in a team setting and their fitness level is probably no where close to game fitness. Any free agent brought in probably won't be ready to go until September and by then we could already set the record for ties.

  • In reply to penapirata:

    List of available names that are looking to come to MLS isn't real impressive.

  • In reply to Guillermo Rivera:

    Maybe they bring Guille Franco back?

  • In reply to Guillermo Rivera:

    List of available free agents who are looking to come to MLS are never impressive.

  • In reply to waamsy:

    Well Ronaldinho is available but MLS doesn't appear to be interested.

  • In reply to Guillermo Rivera:

    Any reason why not? I would think a talented player that is entertaining and well known by even non soccer fans would be someone MLS would love to sign.

  • I think Blanco is now available.

  • In reply to waamsy:

    Too late.....he's playing for Puebla. Maybe next season. ;)

  • I hear Pele is available on a free and he prefers to be paid in $5 foot longs.

  • Ronaldinho's market value is roughly 1.5 mil euros, approximately
    half of Jones value.
    He had 12 goals and 9 assists in Serie A during the 12/13 season
    in 28 games. Hasn't played that much during the 13/14 season.
    Could be a decent pickup at the right price if his attitude is productive, but has a history of being a head case, actually would rather see him on the field rather than Magee with his mannequin imitation.

  • In reply to lonecoyote:

    I never saw a mannequin whine and throw hissy fits.

  • Guys. The reality is the season is over for the fire. At this point we are the second worst team in the league.there is not one single player on the team that is worth the price of my tickets. Andy HAuptman if he has one bit of honesty should apologize for this complete season. As I see it at least the epl , the bears and even good local college soccer starts in a couple of weeks. If there are not major changes made for the next season I am going to save the $1700.00 that I spent on the fire tickets and use that hard earned money to go to a couple of Kansas City games next season.

  • In reply to brokerjohn:

    I already dropped my partial season a few years ago. Remember when the stadium used to be almost full, even in Naperville?

  • In reply to waamsy:

    Interestingly the attendance numbers are basically even with last year.

    They are still among the league's low performers, but I would think you would have seen a decrease due to team performance this year. Maybe they are cooking the numbers

  • In reply to Roti2000:

    One wonders considering the PR bent of the organization.

    But in any market there is always going to be a certain number of fans who really want to watch a local professional club and will turn out regardless. Even to watch a club neither playing very well nor showing any real sign of making an effort to do anything about it. The 2014 CF may be less a competitive side than an effective gauge for identifying that number.

    But seriously, bad as things are with the current performance and with all the doubts about the ownership commitment, there is still hope for the future. As long as we have that, the Fire should draw a few more than the bare number of people who will turn out, if for no other reason, just to see the quality sides coming in to play against the Fire.

    Considering the late season performance last year and the excitement generated, it IS a little surprising that the numbers don't seem diminished this year by comparison. I'm wondering if last year's last season push isn't part of the comparison. What source are you looking at for the numbers?

  • The Fire should admit that the season might as well be over and start playing the kids for the future. Don't bring the kids on for cameos in lost causes; start them.

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