CJ Brown assistant coach fire

C.J. Brown leaves Chicago Fire coaching staff, reunites with Jason Kreis at New York City FC

Less than one year after re-joining the Chicago Fire as an assistant coach, C.J. Brown is leaving the club.

The Fire and New York City FC announced on Monday that the former Fire center back has left Chicago to join NYCFC as an assistant.

“I have made a very difficult decision to leave the Fire. My family is very sad about leaving a place we consider our home, but I have been given a chance that I cannot pass up,” Brown said in a statement on Chicago-Fire.com.

The move reunites Brown with New York City FC head coach Jason Kreis and assistant coach Miles Joseph, with whom he coached at Real Salt Lake from 2011-13.

“One of the many reasons I decided to join NYCFC was that I already know the coaching staff,” Brown said in a separate statement on NYCFC.com. “I’ve worked with Jason and Miles before, and we had a fantastic relationship and understanding. I know what it takes to work for Jason and what he expects from his players and coaches. He has a strong coaching philosophy, and it’s one that I agree with.”

Chicago head coach Frank Yallop and technical director Brian Bliss now have assistant coach Clint Mathis, goalkeeping coach Aron Hyde and strength and conditioning coach Tony Jouaux on staff. Former US national team, Columbus and Chicago forward Brian McBride did some part-time coaching work with the Fire last year and is not expected to return to his role as a FOX Sports television analyst in 2015.

“It’s disappointing to lose C.J. from our coaching staff, as we made every attempt to ensure he would remain with the club long-term,” Yallop said in the Chicago-Fire.com article. “In a sense, C.J. saw an opportunity to ‘get the band back together,’ so to speak. C.J. was a valuable part of what we are doing here, and I have great appreciation for the work he put into this club over the past season.  As we wish him well in his next endeavor, our club remains focused on seeing our plans come together. We look forward to the campaign ahead.”