Frank Klopas named Chicago Fire head coach

Frank Klopas - Chicago Fire

Chicago Fire FC have brought back Frank Klopas as head coach, the club announced Tuesday.

This is Klopas’ second stint as the Fire's full-time head coach and he’s served as interim head coach on three prior occasions, including in 2023 when he saw out the remainder of their campaign following Ezra Hendrickson’s departure in early May.

Klopas, who also previously led CF Montréal, holds a 49W-43L-29D regular season record as the Fire’s head coach.

“We conducted a thorough process with numerous well-qualified candidates, and we believe that Frank Klopas is the right person to lead the team,” Chicago sporting director Georg Heitz said in a release. “Frank is hard-working, has strong relationships with our players and staff, and knows what it takes to be successful in this league.

“During the interview process Frank laid out a clear plan to create a winning culture and mentality within the club, and we are all aligned on the areas that we need to strengthen to be much more competitive in 2024. We will work closely with Frank to improve the roster and finalize his coaching staff for the upcoming season.”

With Klopas back, Chicago remain chasing their first Audi MLS Cup Playoffs trip since 2017. They finished this past season with 40 points (10W-14L-10D), slotting 13th in the Eastern Conference table.

Beyond this coach hire, the Fire also plan on acquiring a DP striker this offseason. Any newcomers would supplement a core that includes club-record signing Xherdan Shaqiri and homegrown stars like midfielder Brian Gutiérrez and goalkeeper Chris Brady.

“I’ve never made it a secret how much I care for this wonderful club and city. Chicago is my home, and I would do anything to bring success to the Fire,” said Klopas. “At this time, I believe that stepping back onto the sidelines is where I can best help this club achieve its goals.

“I’m excited to build a strong culture and a winning mentality within the team, where everyone is committed to a standard of excellence and hard work. I am very grateful to Joe Mansueto and our technical staff for their trust. I would also like to thank our fans for their unwavering support, and I look forward to experiencing many positive moments together at Soldier Field next season.”

A Chicago soccer icon, Klopas originally joined the Fire before the team’s MLS expansion season in 1998 when they won both MLS Cup and the US Open Cup. He ultimately made 49 appearances for the club.