Fire open training camp - more on Dax McCarty

The first day of training camp signals the start of the new season for many. Fire players reported to the north side's Private Bank Fire Pitch today for media day before beginning training in earnest tomorrow.

The club's most recent high-profile addition, Dax McCarty was of course absent while training with the USMNT in California, but he was a big topic of conversation.

The latest episode of the Fire Confidential Live podcast is chock full of interviews from the first day of camp. Nelson Rodriguez discussed McCarty and the patience he is being afforded while away from the team, improving the side with additional reinforcements, and much more.

Veljko Paunovic spoke to local media about how he sees the team lining up and a potentially better side in 2017.

Michael de Leeuw and newcomers Nemanja Nikolic and Juninho are also featured.

Current training camp roster

GK: Jorge Bava, Stefan Cleveland, Matt Lampson, Mihaljo Miskovic*

DEF: Drew Beckie*, Jonathan Campbell, Matej Dekovic**, Patrick Doody, Michael Harrington, Johan Kappelhof, Joao Meira, Boyd Okwuonu*, Brandon Vincent

MID: David Accam, Arturo Alvarez, Brandt Bronico**, Joey Calistri, Drew Conner, Collin Fernandez, John Goossens, Daniel Johnson**, Juninho, Dax McCarty, Djordje Mihailovic*, Matt Polster

FWD: David Arshakyan, Michael de Leeuw, Guillermo Delgado**, Nemanja Nikolic, Luis Solignac

*Trialist

**Unsigned SuperDraft Pick

Filed under: 2017 Pre Season

Tags: Chicago Fire

CHICAGO TRIBUNE VIDEO

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  • http://www.futhead.com/squad-builder/S67OkE0Ltv00tmd00SACo0rzBx0m5vo0Y!Ui0!1Ue0LIpe0r6de0_VBj0wqCr0JP3x0bNkj0PTU00wSLi/

    This is how I would put the current roster in a squad.

  • Was NR's statement that "there are still players to be added to the MIX" a double entendre? I see Diskerud was left of off NYCFC's roster and he would be a good add to the midfield pool.

    Also, his use of the Indian word for enjoying the happiness of others immediately brought forth a plethora of options for jokes at how CF97 have made everyone else in the league happy came to my mind, but I will pass on that...for now...

  • In reply to c0quito18:

    nope....Mix at $760 guaranteed isn't going anywhere within the league. Chances are NYCFC sends him back overseas.

  • What is going on with the lack of international slots? Anybody close to a green card yet?

  • It's a shame after listening to these interviews of NR and Pauno. NR not sure if the roster is good enough to make the playoffs and Pauno said the most important aspect of his style of play is "keeping the ball and controlling the game". Not getting a CAM with "Keane like"money before the season starts is an absolute joke. Wouldn't a quality CAM make your team better and help with controlling the game? Am I missing something?

  • In reply to go fire:

    They have plenty of time to make moves. Only time will tell.

  • In reply to go fire:

    Dax and Juninho both have pretty good passing percentages (this is per the comments I heard on Extra Time Radio from their Monday pod). I think NR /& Pauno are looking to buckle down the midfield first to protect the backline and are happy with a couple of ball shuttlers in the middle with DeLeeuw and maybe Goosens / Solignac underneath rather than a true playmaker.

    One thing I would NOT want would be the announcement of some sham 27 year old DP from the Belgian 2nd division and a half dozen U-19 caps as the playmaker. I'd like to think that if there was a clown brought in such a position, Dax and Juninho would simply pass to the wings.

    These acquisitions ARE an improvement to the team. A significant improvement. I was about to say that I think he's biding his time, but he's stopped talking about "finding the right piece in the puzzle" as he has said several times before. I hope that doesn't mean that they stop looking for a quality playmaker or a true RB.

  • In reply to go fire:

    The lack of a truely creative cm or a "creative" right mid does trouble me a bit. However, the thing that is gnawing at me right now is the willingness to say Harrington and Kap are really good options at right back and then say that the team is still looking for some depth at the position. NR had the opportunity to get Jonathan Spector or even someone like Chance Meyers and he passed ... did he watch how terrible Harrington looked at the end of the season?

    I will admit that the "process" looks more convincing this year and I can only hope there is a genuine solution available. Not some d2 Belgian like Mo mentioned.

  • Guillermo can you give us an update on the Accam rumours?

  • In reply to Firefan5819:

    Nothing to them.

  • Why is it every time I listen to N-Rod talk I just want to punch him in the face? There is something about him I just don't like or don't trust.

  • In reply to penapirata:

    Seek therapy?

  • In reply to penapirata:

    I understand what you mean. I think it's because he speaks in a matter that makes it sound as if he thinks the listener is really stupid. It is more than just a condescending tone; it is really more disdain.

  • In reply to Krasov:

    I don't think he's actually talking down to anyone. In fact if anything, I think he's trying to "talk up" by saying things in an overly complex, management-speak way, instead of just talking like a normal human. I think that one of the reasons he's annoying to listen to is because he speaks kind of slowly, which maybe is what you're taking as disdain, but I also think he has to do that because he's so obsessed with finding his convoluted wording. It may be a strategy to get himself to slow down so he doesn't put his foot in his mouth, too.

    For example, about Dax McCarty (this is a quote I sampled off the cuff from the podcast): "we just wanted to impress upon him our values, our keen desire to add him, that he was our top target for a long period of time, and to let him know that we respected his need to breathe."

    Impress upon him?

    Keen desire to add?

    Long period of time?

    He could just say "We told him that he's been our top target for a long time. We said we wanted him because he fits in with our team values. We also know that he needs time to adjust to the change."

  • Just letting off some steam after listening to the podcast. The Fire "are what they are" and NR is doing the best he can within AH's constraints. In a perfect world, would be nice seeing Dax/Juninho linking up with Honda.

  • Forgot to mention yesterday that by happenstance I caught an actual 10-second mention of "Fire preseason camp starting..." on 780 AM.

    Found it interesting that there was mention of it.

  • In reply to BrianC.:

    Yeah, interesting to hear ANY mention of the Fire, anywhere...
    seems the only 'major' place I hear anything about the Fire is
    maybe 'Instant Replay' on Channel 9, usually something in
    passing or an infrequent interview. Who knows, maybe this week's
    workouts at the Pitch will get on there this Sunday night...

  • In reply to Heroic Oaf:

    PS: only place ASIDE FROM The Daily Herald, that is...

  • They still seems thin on D. Wonder with all the midfield additions if they plan on moving Polster back to defense where he played in college. He's certainly physical enough. Maybe out right. Really hope we don't see man bun on the field again.

  • In reply to Bumsteer:

    There are a lot of MFs for two spots. Dax, Juninho, Fernandez, and Connor. Polster has the attitude for defense. Kid is a damn bull. Bonus if he can develop into a functional RB.

  • In reply to go fire:

    I got the impression long ago that Pauno has no intention of playing Fernandez. I doubt him or Connor are going to have any actual opportunities to play in the MF. Best either of them can hope for is to get traded to another club that will actually groom them and give them an opportunity to see the field.

  • In reply to Bumsteer:

    He would be such a waste if he was moved to RB. He is destined to be our captain and control the middle of the field for the next 8-10 years. He is an absolute stud and was nowhere near the problem for this team. He demands the ball and is a good enough passer to keep possession with better players on the field. He is the hardest worker on the field and we need that energy. He's a box to box midfielder and, when he did play at RB for us, he looked uncomfortable and was exploited at every opportunity.

  • In reply to Bumsteer:

    Last time they tried putting a true defensive mid in the back line it was disastrous for both team and player. This kid is a natural for def mid, and has the motor to press and recover over and over.

  • In reply to Fireman1:

    The question of Polster's role this season is very interesting. I like the way he plays and he showed growth in his capabilities as a DM from 2015 to 2016. I don't think, however, that he can displace McCarty or Juninho in the first 11.

    I think an important role for the coach is to find a way to get his best 11 on the field and this sometimes means that players have to adapt to a new position. I would not say that Polster playing RB would necessarily be a waste, especially if he is proficient at it. (The few occasions that he has played in the back for the Fire constitute a sample size that is too small to make a judgement.)

    I would rather see Paunovic push Polster as far as he can to be a fullback than to see Polster come off the bench. There HAS to be a way to get him into the first 11.

  • In reply to StaryByk3:

    The way is called.... INJURY. AN all too likely route. Then there is also rotation when games get too frequent. But I agree they have to try to get him in as much as possible and that may have to mean some work at RB unless a better option materializes.

  • Brava

    Kap Cambell Meira Vincent

    Polster Juninho

    Dax

    De Leeuw Accam

    Niko

  • In reply to Krasov:

    *if* an opportunity for a good RB materializes, the question is who of that back line formation gets benched? Meira or Campbell? Or would it be switched off based on who practiced harder?

  • In reply to BrianC.:

    Would be nice if one or two of Okwuono, Beckie, Deckovic, Doody, and Harrington a better option at RB than Kapp. Competition at CB between Meira, Kapp, and Campbell for starting minutes would only make our team better.

  • In reply to BrianC.:

    short putt, Meira goes to the bench. Kap and Campbell in the middle was the best pairing last year.

  • In reply to Krasov:

    Plus Kap said that he is more comfortable at CB since he has been playing that a lot,more thought his career.

  • I can't believe that Atlanta has sold over 27K season tickets. That is incredible for a smaller market city.

  • In reply to penapirata:

    Atlanta is 10th in population by metro area in the US... not sure that makes it a "smaller market city." It's ahead of Boston, San Francisco, Montreal, and Seattle. Are those metro areas "small market?"

  • In reply to Modibo:

    Smaller market yes.

  • In reply to penapirata:

    6 million people is smaller market?

    Salt Lake metro population in 2014 was 1.1 million, Columbus 2 mill, San Jose 2 mil, Orlando 2.1 mil, Kansas City 2.3, Vancouver 2.8, Portland 2.4, Denver 2.8...

    OK, yeah... smaller than Chicago. But not really small within MLS. It's quite a feat, period, but it's a pretty big area, so not as incredible as it would be if, say, Louisville did it.

  • In reply to Modibo:

    Assuming Louisville enters MLS... Or Cinci, or etc

  • In reply to Modibo:

    Well, Atlanta is to the South what Chicago is to the Midwest as far a being a regional metropolis. Makes sense.

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