The Transparency Project: What Do We Know & How Do We Know It

This series hopes to use the power of the crowd to better understand the management, finances and history of the Chicago Fire

The unofficial motto of MLS could be "as per team and league policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed." Despite the MLS Players Union annual data dump, efforts to shine a light on the shadowy corners of club finances, governance and roster makeup tend to be piecemeal affairs. Message boards and social media light up with conflicting reports about transfer fees, or cap exceptions, or that mythical, magical omnitool known as "allocation money." And no one bothers to remember to ask Frank Yallop how he celebrated his goal against Manchester United.

This, then, hopes to be something different. The edifice of secrecy looks imposing from some distance, but up close, it is riven with subtle cracks; we, aided by purity of purpose, propose to gather these details together in a meaningful way, with one end in mind: To put forth an increasingly accurate picture of the financial, cultural and historical situation of the Chicago Fire.

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