Fire busy on deadline day

USMNT midfielder Alejandro Bedoya agreed to a deal with the Philadelphia Union in the last 24 hours but Chicago had a chance to claim his MLS rights by virtue of holding the top spot in the bizarre player dispersal system known as the Allocation Order. The Fire were able to convert Bedoya's interest in signing with Union into a trade for his rights.

Sources indicate that the Fire did approach Bedoya about the possibility of playing in Chicago but the move to Philadelphia was already in motion. The price tag in terms of transfer fee and salary, in the neighborhood of $1,000,000 individually, wasn't exorbitant but Chicago felt it could better use those resources elsewhere, particularly if they could add to their allocation war chest.

The Fire have received General and Targeted Allocation Money, the Union's 2017 first round Superdraft pick, the Union's number two spot in the Allocation Order, and an unnamed player on the Union's Discovery List, in exchange for the top Allocation spot, which Philadelphia used to acquire Bedoya. The allocation dollar amounts aren't officially published, but the reliable Sam Stejskal reported those totals to be $100,000 in GAM and $75,000 in TAM.

“We’ve often spoken of building a team that will be competitive over time,” said Fire general manager Nelson Rodríguez via press release. “This move is directly tied to other deals today and transactions to be completed in the coming months that will allow us to execute our plan and realize our on-field goals."

How Rodriguez and the Fire plan to utilize the newly acquired Allocation Money along with the presumably already substantial sums currently in their pockets remains to be seen. Another Designated Player move before this window closes at midnight tonight is very unlikely but the Fire should be active for an impact player in the January window.

The official announcement regarding the addition of forward David Arshakyan should be made shortly but Chicago also seems to be still actively looking to complete another move before Thursday. A trade for a forward from within MLS is a possibility as is the addition of a more veteran player from outside of the league using some of their TAM.

No additional moves sound like they're done but the day isn't over yet.

Filed under: 2016 Regular Season

Tags: Chicago Fire


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  • Thanks for the update, Guillermo. Would you have preferred to land Bedoya or collect the TAM/GAM and (in theory) use it in the January window. Think Bedoya would have been a good fit here?

  • In reply to jimmyblackcloud:

    Honestly....I'd have taken the TAM/GAM deal. He's a good player but would not have changed the course of this season. That said, they need to do something substantial in January.

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    In reply to Guillermo Rivera:

    Spot on. even though he could play in the two areas of need and his talent is obvious, his impact wouldnt have been big enough to make waves this year and next year he would occupy a DP slot that could otherwise be filled by a bigger talent (in theory). as much as I want to see significant signings, I have a little respect for them not making a knee jerk reaction and pulling all strings to land him. Beyond that, NR again showed some impressive bartering skills again (would not mind bringing him along next time I buy a car).
    With the statement "This move is directly tied to other deals today" do you think he was just talking about the TAM/GAM part of the deal or do you think there is anyway they are looking at anyone on the allocation list before the deadline?

  • In reply to Carl Miller:

    Doubtful....the guys on that allocation list are currently under contract. A lot would have to happen in a few hours. More likely it's a play for the possibility of somebody becoming available later this year. The allocation order resets at the beginning of next year.

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    In reply to Guillermo Rivera:

    confused on transfer windows stuff now....are you saying they could potentially try to grab someone off the allocation list before roster freeze date in september...if thats within the rules, IDK...

  • In reply to Carl Miller:

    Technically, no - unless the player was released from contract. There is however a way they could sign a player on the list to a pre-contract before the order resets.

  • I don't really understand the uproar from Fire supporters. Bedoya is good but not great. But the Fire 1) didn't lose anything by not signing him and 2) he wouldn't have magically solved their problems.

    Having said that, it will be frustrating if they just sit on their war chest. That is the downside to the non-relegation system; what motivation do the Fire have to spend money and improve? The MLS is growing in popularity so they're going to make money even as a bottom feeder.

  • GAM! GAM! GAM!
    TAM! TAM! TAM!
    We got GAM! We got TAM!

    I agree on Bedoya. I like him on the national team, but I'm not sure if he's a player who would have a significant impact for us now. He's also not a player to build a team around in the future. There's no use in going to the mat with Philly on a player who didn't particularly want to come here, especially after they dealt the Discovery Rights to DeLeeuw to Chicago. Very different from Jones or Drogba.

    Still, at some point, I think NR's going to have to offer some evidence that the TAM, GAM, and SPAM he's collecting is giong somewhere. Not that it hasn't been used, but I think that most fans will want to see a blue-ribbon DP come in next season as evidence that the TAM/GAM plan and other wheeling/dealing is on track.

  • Dang Arshakyan's 6'4", 190 lbs.

    Guillermo, what's a "Special Discovery Player?"

  • So will the Fire look like this the rest of the season?
    Accam De Leeuw Goossens
    Thiam Polster
    Vincent Campbell Kappelhoff Ramos

    Also Guillermo, will Solignac be here in time for the USOC game?

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    Why another forward, the team needs attacking mids, except for Goossens, no one seems able to connect with the forwards.

  • If our new forwards pan out, our main purchases in the winter will be to find someone who can help us string passes together in the midfield.

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