Gaston Gimenez

TRANSFER TRACKER STATUS: Extension

Chicago Fire FC have opened a Designated Player slot on their roster by signing midfielder Gastón Giménez to a new contract, the club announced Friday.

The 31-year-old’s new deal begins in January 2023 and he’ll remain under contract with the Fire through the 2025 MLS season. Additionally, the Paraguay international received his U.S. Green Card earlier this year and will not occupy an international roster slot.

“Gaston is a talented player who is very important to the club,” Chicago sporting director Georg Heitz said in a release. “His decision to restructure his contract to provide the team with more roster flexibility speaks volumes about his character and desire to win titles with the Fire.”

Giménez originally joined Chicago from Argentine side Vélez Sarsfield in February 2020. He’s tallied two goals and six assists across 65 games (59 starts), though is recovering from a right hamstring surgery in late August.

With Giménez no longer taking a DP spot, Chicago will have Swiss international midfielder Xherdan Shaqiri and Mexican winger Jairo Torres occupying those tags for the 2023 season.

That increased roster flexibility comes with Chicago missing the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs every year since 2018. Heading into a Decision Day game Sunday against the New England Revolution (2:30 pm ET | MLS LIVE on ESPN+), they’ll finish head coach Ezra Hendrickson’s first season no higher than 10th place in the Eastern Conference table (41 points max).