Tuesday News and Notes

ML$ News

The last few days have yielded some interesting news on the MLS financial front.  Firstly Sports Business Journal reported on a possible transaction between MLS and Providence Equity Partners.  The deal would involve Providence purchasing a 25% stake in Soccer United Marketing (SUM) from MLS for a cool $125-$150 million.  SUM is the marketing arm of MLS which controls media and broadcast rights for US Soccer and the World Cup in America.  While neither MLS/SUM or Providence have confirmed the possibility of a deal, the article suggests that MLS could use the payday to either reward owners who have lost a considerable amount of money over the years in operating and start up of the league or MLS could utilize the cash influx to attract bigger names and better players.  I’m assuming a move for the latter would involve some sort sort of increase to the current salary budget structure.  This will be an important story to keep an eye on in the coming weeks and months.

Speaking of the salary structure, the MLS Player’s Union has released an updated list of player salaries for 2011.  There are several interesting new names and numbers on the Fire’s list.

After originally being listed with a guaranteed compensation of $42,000.00 for 2011 in May’s MLSPU release Cristian Nazirit is now listed with a guaranteed sum of $302,500.00 for this season.  As we’ve discussed in the comments section of various posts, Nazirit was due for a big bump in 2012 if the organization decided to bring him back.  As a 21 year old forward with supposed interest from overseas it was hard to believe that Nazirit would come to Chicago for a relatively paltry $42,000.00 sum.

The same can be said for Sebastian Grazzini who according the Union is making $48,000.00.  Although the amount is essentially a half season figure I think it’s safe to assume that Grazzini, like Diego Chaves and Gaston Puerari is not coming quite that cheaply.  Consider that Kellen Gulley, the Fire’s second home grown player signing is listed at $62,000.00 guaranteed for 2011.   As pointed out previously, the numbers listed in the release aren’t always telling the whole story.  The Union lists dollars paid by the league and does not provide dollars paid to the players by the individual clubs.

One number that seems accurate is the amount paid to Pavel Pardo.  At $159,996.00 the midfielder is playing half a season for less than DP money and will sit down to review his situation with the club after the season ends.

Chivas De Guadalajara

The Big Goats are in town to play the Fire in a friendly tomorrow at Toyota Park and Pardo has been heavily featured in the pre-game build up to the match but the Fire won’t have a full squad available.  Both Dominic Oduro and Sebastian Grazzini will sit out the match.

Former CD Guadalajara and Chivas USA midfielder Francisco “Panchito” Mendoza is training with the Fire this week.  After spending time in Mexico with Chivas, Mendoza returned to MLS this season only to be released last week.

More Fire

In case you missed it over the weekend, check out Jeff Harbert’s Chicago Fire Fanzine by clicking here.  Very nicely done and worth a look.




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  • Not sure what advance ticket sales look like for this friendly but there doesn't seem to be a buzz about it at all.

  • Interesting story about U-18 player Jourdan Gooden......


    The Fire are paying 90% of his tuition.

  • "The Union lists dollars paid by the league and does not provide dollars paid to the players by the individual clubs."

    Guillermo, how does this work exactly? Would the club tend to pay performance or appearance bonuses, or is it really case-by-case?

    Thanks for the insight and analysis on this, btw - it's really appreciated!

  • In reply to Modibo:

    It's all a bit confusing but I think MLS likes it that way. The differences are case by case and club by club. MLS pays the $2.675 million dollars that each club has a "budget" to start off with. It behooves clubs to use the entire amount since there is no credit given or allocation awarded for not reaching that amount. Teams can pay players above what the league pays them and that number is not published which makes the actual expenditure on salaries almost impossible to determine from the outside. Then of course, allocation dollars make it even more difficult to figure out.

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    Thats a lot for Christian if he is never playing.

  • In reply to waam:

    That's a whole lot for a guy who isn't even in the 18 on some days.

  • Random comment......

    While perusing the paper version of the Chicago Tribune (parent company to ChicagoNow I might add) I noticed that the sports "stats" section or agate page doesn't even list the MLS standings. Under a microscopic soccer "section" the Trib claims that the Fire are playing Chivas "DEL" Guadalajara tonight.


  • Dan Gargan at $70k > Dasan Robinson at $100k+. That move looks better and better each day! I also hate saying it, but Baggio is stealing money right now...

  • Is today's game on any tv outlets to watch? Galavision, etc?

  • In reply to Adam25:

    No TV tonight

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