Bob Bradley, the top assistant coach for two-time MLS champion D.C. United, was named the first head coach and Director of Soccer Operations for the Chicago Fire, the team announced Oct. 30. "We are very fortunate to have Bob as our team leader," said Fire GM Peter Wilt. "He has the qualities we felt we needed in a head coach; he knows MLS players and A-League players very well, he has been extremely successful on the collegiate and professional level, and he is a winner. We will rely on him to direct the soccer side of the organization." Bradley, 39, had a standout playing career at Princeton, leading the Tigers in scoring in 1979. After graduating, he served as the head coach at Ohio University, going 10-5-2 in 1981, before Bruce Arena hired him as an assistant coach at the University of Virginia. Bradley spent two years with the Cavaliers before returning to his alma mater as head coach. He guided the Tigers from 1984-1995 and led the team to a 92-80-15 record, winning two Ivy League titles and making three trips to the NCAA tournament, including a 1993 trip to the Final Four. He then left Princeton to rejoin Arena at D.C. United, where he served as an assistant coach for the 1996 and 1997 seasons in which D.C. won the MLS championship. He also served as Arena's assistant with the 1996 Olympic team, which went 1-1-1 at the Atlanta games. "I am very excited to be involved with the Fire from its inception, and I am very fortunate to be a head coach in the third largest market in the country," said Bradley. "Over the past two seasons we were very successful in D.C., and I hope to bring that success to Chicago." Bradley will begin building the Fire in the MLS Expansion Draft, which will be held Nov. 6.
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