Frank Klopas won't be the only one heading to Europe this December. Scheduling concerns got in the way of original reports that Manchester United would host Sean Johnson in training. Everton has taken advantage of the mix-up and invited Sean Johnson to train with their squad from December 4-10.
"It’s a very good thing," said Fire head coach Frank Klopas Wednesday. "For a young goalkeeper like Sean, it’s great that he’s continuing to train and develop in the offseason. He’ll be in a different environment where he can learn from a talented keeper inand go up against Premier League players. It benefits us as much as it does for him to have that experience."
Klopas gave at least partial credit to the 2008 Everton-friendly for making this happen. He also said training opportunities like this are vital in MLS because the league's off-season is longer than European leagues.
Johnson took part in the U-23 training camp last month in Germany and should make the squad for CONCACAF Olympic qualifying next spring. D.C. United goalkeeper Bill Hamid has been getting the USMNT senior call-ups over Sean Johnson but the competition for the U-23 Olympic squad will likely be Johnson and Hamid head on. Any little training like this should help Johnson in his battle. No doubt our Chicago Fire goalie will also work on what I believe is his greatest weakness right now; ball distribution and goal kicks. You don't see them kick the ball out of bounds on goal kicks too often in the EPL. Best of luck and safe travels to Sean next week.