- Finished 9th in the Eastern Conference last season (W6, L10, D18, 36 pts)
- Signed three international Designated Players this offseason
- Biggest rival: New England Revolution
Key Player: David Accam
The 24-year-old Ghanaian international is entering his first season in MLS and will be looking to score goals and score goals often. After a successful stint at Swedish-side Helsingborgs IF, Accam was linked with moves to clubs such as CSKA Moskow and Stuttgart, but chose to take a Designated Player contract with Chicago. A member of Ghana’s national team that recently went to the Africa Cup of Nations final, Accam has played with some of the top players in the world and has big-game experience.
Other names to watch: Kennedy Igboanaike, Shaun Maloney, Mike Magee
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With some key offseason additions, Chicago is hoping to challenge for a playoff berth in 2015.
Manager: Frank Yallop
Still a young 50-years-old, Frank Yallop is getting ready for his 12th season as a head coach in MLS. Yallop led San Jose to two MLS Cup titles in 2001 and 2003 before leaving for a brief stint as manager of the Canadian national team. Yallop returned to MLS to coach Los Angeles and San Jose before being named head coach of Chicago in 2013. The Fire have failed to make the playoffs in the last two seasons, and have only seen the postseason once over the past five years. Also the club’s director of soccer, Yallop has made some big signings in the offseason to help bolster his squad offensively.
Outlook for 2015
Chicago led the league with 18 draws last season, something Frank Yallop will be keen to improve on in 2015. With the Designated Player signings of David Accam and Kennedy Igboanaike, two strikers from Sweden’s top flight, and Shaun Maloney, a Scottish international who has played for top clubs such as Celtic and Aston Villa, it is clear Chicago is looking to cause some problems in the East. If these new additions can find the back of the net, some of those draws will turn to wins, and Chicago could challenge for a playoff spot.