Chicago Fire SuperDraft Preview: Can new manager Frank Yallop find the right balance?
Ahead of the 2014 SuperDraft, MLSsoccer.com is breaking down each team's needs and potential draft targets. The Chicago Fire have changed directions, bringing in 2012 MLS Coach of the Year Frank Yallop to not only be the boss on the sideline, but in the front office as well:
For the third straight year, the Fire were fighting for their playoff lives up until the last weekend of the season. For the second time in that span, they came up short. And this time it cost Frank Klopas his job.
New boss Yallop is one of the winningest coaches in MLS history, and the cupboard at Toyota Park isn't close to bare. It just needs a touch-up here and there...
Chicago Fire's SuperDraft Picks: #13 (1st Rd), #61 (4th Rd), #65 (4th Rd), #75 (4th Rd)
Chicago Fire's Depth Chart (25 players):
Goalkeepers (3): Sean Johnson, Kyle Reynish, Alec Kann
Right Backs (2): Lovel Palmer, Steven Kinney
Left Backs (2): Gonzalo Segares, Hunter Jumper
Center Backs (4): Austin Berry, Bakary Soumare, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Patrick Ianni
Center Mids (4): Jeff Larentowicz, Alex, Brendan King, Chris Ritter
Left Mids (2): Dilly Duka, Yazid Atouba
Right Mids (2): Patrick Nyarko, Victor Pineda
Attacking Mids (1): Harrison Shipp
Forwards (5): Mike Magee, Juan Luis Anangono, Chris Rolfe, Quincy Amarikwa, Kellen Gulley
International slots (5 of 8 remaining): Atouba, Anangono, Alex
Chicago's Primary Need: Fullback depth
The Fire came into Wednesday with two central defenders on the roster. They ended it with four, meaning they addressed their biggest need before the draft even arrived. In the process, though, they had to give up their starting right back -- which they should target on Thursday.
Secondary Need: Central midfield depth
The Fire got some help from their academy when they signed Ritter, a d-mid/central defensive hybrid from Northwestern. But that leaves them with only three central midfielders on the squad (Harrison Shipp, another academy kid, is a pure attacker). Got to get depth there.
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