Transfer Tracker

Chicago Fire sign defender Arnaud Souquet from Ligue 1's Montpellier

Arnaud Souquet to CHI


Chicago Fire FC have acquired a new right back, announcing Monday they’ve signed Arnaud Souquet from Ligue 1 side Montpellier HSC on a free transfer.

The Frenchman, who turns 31 in February, joins through the 2025 MLS season and offers a crucial backline addition after Chicago didn’t retain Boris Sekulić following the 2022 campaign. Jhon Espinoza also left for FC Lugano in Switzerland this winter.

“We are very excited to welcome Arnaud to the club,” Chicago sporting director Georg Heitz said in a release.

“We went into the offseason with a focus on strengthening the outside back position and improving our defending in transition. Arnaud is a very experienced player who has been playing regularly in a top-five league and his addition will help to immediately solidify our backline.”

Souquet contributed five goals and 11 assists in 149 Ligue 1 games for Montpellier, LOSC Lille and OGC Nice. He’s played in nearly 320 professional matches; Belgium’s Mouscron and Gent are his only previous stops beyond France.

A former French youth international, Souqet made his professional debut in 2009 after developing through Lille’s academy.

Souqet joins a Chicago defense that allowed 48 goals a season ago, good for the top-third in MLS. They’ll have a new goalkeeper after homegrown star Gaga Slonina departed on a club-record move to English Premier League side Chelsea, but center back Rafael Czichos crucially remains after joining from the German Bundesliga last winter.

Chicago are entering their second season under head coach Ezra Hendrickson, eyeing their first Audi MLS Cup Playoffs trip since 2017. They’ll start their new season on Matchday 2 when hosting New York City FC (8:30 pm ET | MLS Season Pass).