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What They're Saying: Nelson Rodriguez
March 21st, 2017 12:36AM
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TAGS:  chicago fire, germany


“We’re adding someone who has won at every level, including the very highest levels, and has done so in a way that is consistent with our values. We as a club will now be forced to hold ourselves to a higher standard, an accountability level. Previously, I think we could satisfy ourselves with what is known domestically. Now we need to rise to a standard that is set more internationally.”

-- Chicago Fire general manager Nelson Rodriguez on signing 32-year-old German World Cup champion Bastian Schweinsteiger from Manchester United. (Chicago Tribune)

  1. Liane Sims
    commented on: March 21, 2017 at 1:38 a.m.
    Another old player? Great. Hey Fire, what do you have to account for development wise? Where are your products at? Is that the domestic part you were satisfied with? The standard is can you develop anyone at his level when he was at his prime in Europe? Otherwise, I for one, could care less.
  1. frank schoon
    commented on: March 21, 2017 at 1:57 p.m.
    Liane, the way develop is to have mix of old and new. Young players need guidance and the only way is to have experienced players. One player is not enough. They should one in the backfield one in the midfield and one up frontline. With the old the new won't ever learn the ropes, the discipline , the short cut, tactics, and why's. Cruyff learned a lot from the older players he with starting as a young pro. A team should not buy one old player but at least 3, if they are interested in teaching the young MLS players....
  1. Liane Sims
    commented on: March 21, 2017 at 3:37 p.m.
    Agreed Frank. Just want to see the same amount of energy in development.
  1. Liane Sims
    commented on: March 21, 2017 at 3:39 p.m.
    I'll never root for a club just to see it win. A club must represent its community, do for it's community, show love for it's community. Gibe back to it's community.
  1. Fire Paul Gardner Now
    commented on: March 21, 2017 at 9:46 a.m.
    A team stuck in MLS 1.0 mode makes an MLS 1.0 move. Over the hill player who will struggle mightily in MLS, contribute little to his team, and pocket a boatload of cash. No wonder this team has finished rock bottom of the league the past two seasons. I wouldn't bet against it happening a third time either.
  1. K Michael
    commented on: March 21, 2017 at 11:16 a.m.
    I would take that bet. I have a decent intimate knowledge about the Fire’s new philosophy under Nelson and it will definitely move this team off the bottom. They are committing many more resources to their DA network; their new technical director from PSG is already instituting best practices throughout the academy; they are building a nucleus of midfielders, and have capable players on attack. I am skeptical that the playoffs will beckon this year; but they will be much better, injuries not withstanding
  1. Fire Paul Gardner Now
    commented on: March 21, 2017 at 11:45 a.m.
    Ok fair enough. They didn't look so great this past weekend though.
  1. Liane Sims
    commented on: March 21, 2017 at 11:52 a.m.
    K Michael, would you care to share as to how they are building that nucleus in the academy? What is he doing exactly that is so much different?
  1. Liane Sims
    commented on: March 21, 2017 at 11:53 a.m.
    And why is his focus solely or mostly on midfielders? That doesnt make sense. Shouldn't a true pro academy focus on any top talent they at least have available in their own city. Sorry, but seems like more of the same to me.
  1. K Michael
    commented on: March 22, 2017 at 11:58 a.m.
    Liane, they are finally establishing a system to track every player at every age in their local DA, AND in their affiliate DA network (Indiana, etc). This has never happened before. Nelson invited every player in the DA and personally layed out his vision in group meetings; all words, granted, but its got to start somewhere. It will take awhile, but the culture is being shaken up in that organization and I strongly believe it will bear fruit over the coming years.
  1. Liane Sims
    commented on: March 22, 2017 at 12:10 p.m.
    K, so he talked to a few DA teams and that is what will build a strong nucleus? How hard is it to keep track of their DA teams a few affiliates? You mean they didnt do this before?
  1. K Michael
    commented on: March 22, 2017 at 12:03 p.m.
    Liane, I never said they were solely focusing on their midfield, but it is their primary focus; they, as a team, were dead last in short passing the past two years, and were top three in long-ball (thus near the bottom in shots on target and passing accuracy). The midfield is the engine of any team, and for a team trying to play a better game, there is no better place to start. McCarty, Juninho, and Bastian is a heck of an upgrade.
  1. Liane Sims
    commented on: March 22, 2017 at 12:15 p.m.
    K, what they are dead last in is Homegrown players making 1st team. Someone told me they have no interest in recruiting or scouting top players at U16-18 under the new leadership. That doesn't seem like a club that cares about youth and developing them. A DA at any pro club tries it's best to bring in the best possible talent regardless of position they play. Focuses on that talent to go pro regardless of position. Focus is midfield? Sigh
  1. Daniel Clifton
    commented on: March 23, 2017 at 1:13 p.m.
    One of the changes I have enjoyed seeing in MLS is teams spending their DP money on young upcoming players who are still reaching their potential such as Giavinco, and now this young guy from Venezuala, Martinez. This appears to me to be a step backward. How does Bastian fit with the two starting defensive midfielders they already have? I hope Scheinsteiger still has some gas in his tank so that he can add something to MLS. I am just not sure that is the case.

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