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Chicago Fire FC owner: We have "huge" expectations for 2020, in talks with top players

Change has defined Chicago Fire FC over roughly the last six months, and owner and chairman Joe Mansueto recognizes the need to capitalize on this period. In fact, in an interview with Brian Sandalow of the Chicago Sun-Times, Mansueto stressed how high expectations are internally. 

‘‘It’s huge,’’ he said. ‘‘We absolutely have to be a very strong team in 2020. We have to be entertaining. We have to be fun to watch. All of those things. And we will be that. We’ve got all the pieces in place.’’

Those pieces include a move to Soldier Field downtown, and a reworked technical staff that includes head coach Raphael Wicky, sporting director Georg Heitz and technical director Sebastian Pelzer. There’s also been an overall rebrand as they depart life at SeatGeek Stadium and enter new ownership, after Mansueto took over last September.

Still, it’s been a relatively-quiet offseason on the roster front. Chicago still have all three Designated Player spots open, and only midfielder Alvaro Medran and Homegrown defender Nicholas Slonina have been signed. They also selected defender Jonathan Jimenez with the No. 26 overall pick in the 2020 MLS SuperDraft.

The Fire are set to report to preseason Jan. 18, and Mansueto assured the roster is “coming together” and they’re having discussions with top players. As it stands, Chicago have 17 players under contract for 2020.

You can check out more from Mansueto’s interview with the Sun-Times here.