The newly released league injury report lists defender Steven Kinney as “out” for the Montreal match and identifies Arne Friedrich and Quincy Amarikwa as “questionable”. Although he hasn’t been officially ruled out don’t look for Friedrich to make his 2013 debut against the Impact. The German defender hasn’t resumed full training this week and with rain today and one more training session scheduled before the weekend it would make little sense to risk further complication at this point, especially with a bye week following the Montreal game.
Mila to the Fire?
It’s a hot topic of fan speculation but it doesn’t appear that the Fire have had much more than exploratory conversations regarding midfielder Sebastian Mila through a contact in Poland. Adding fuel to the fire (bad pun) is the identity of that contact. Former Fire forward Jerzy Podbrozny who played with Frank Klopas on the 1998 squad has stayed in touch with his former teammate and appears to be the intermediary for Mila. Over the weekend Javier Leon responded to an inquiry about Mila via email by saying, “We are familiar with Mila and that he has had a great career, but we have not had any contact with him at this time. If it’s the right fit, we would love to have a Polish player in our squad.”
Klopas reiterated that position yesterday when he told media that no contract offer was on the table nor was there one imminent. Mila is a quality midfielder with playmaking abilities who also apparently came close to joining MLS in 2006. Whether or not the Fire actually make a formal offer remains to be seen since the striker position and depth on the backline have been identified as higher priorities at the moment. If acquired, Mila would ideally slot into a central attacking role which would likely be the underneath forward in the “hole” if the current dual holding midfielder formation is to be utilized. That spot is currently occupied by Chris Rolfe with Alex serving as a back up.
This story has been circulating for several weeks now in the Polish press with Mila continuing to indicate an interest in Chicago and MLS. With his contract expiring in June and his continued insistence that no decisions have been made it’s possible that he could be negotiating in the press to induce a better offer from his current team Slask Wroclaw. Mila is the captain of the club and will be 31 in July so this is likely his last chance to capitalize on free transfer status. He also claims to have options in Austria according to reports.
“Mila’s a good player and we’re looking at him, but we have to see what the needs of the team are right now,” Klopas said yesterday. The needs of the club at the moment lie at the forward position and the Fire attempted to make a run at Monterrey striker Humberto Suazo before he re-signed with the Mexican club this spring. There are also other established goal scorers that the team has been in contact with and could be available in July so a decision to use cap and budget space to sign Mila may have to wait.
The club is also continuing to pursue defensive depth from within MLS. Philadelphia has approached Chicago regarding a trade for Bakary Soumare but the Union’s asking price is apparently too rich at the moment. Soumare is not playing and not even dressing for Philadelphia so any MLS club looking to make a deal would be wise to wait them out. Until then, Mila is a possibility that can be filed in the “maybe” folder.
Pineda back with U-20’s
Victor Pineda has been named to Tab Ramos’ US U-20 squad for a week long camp in California. The US squad will play a friendly on Sunday against the Chivas USA reserves. Pineda is hoping to land on spot for the U-20 World Championships in June.