The Chicago Fire have been mentioned in a pair of situations over the past 24 hours. One situation involves a Polish midfielder; the other situation involves a former Fire center back, who is not happy in his current situation.
Rumors have began circling over the past few days on Twitter that Polish midfielder Sebastian Mila is headed to Major League Soccer this upcoming summer.
RT @soccerinsider Polish midfielder Sebastian Mila to #MLS this summer?— Transfer Watch (@TransferWatch) March 18, 2013
Hot Time In Old Town has learned from a source that Mila is very likely headed to the Chicago Fire. On top of what we have learned, there was also a segment on Polvision, a Polish news broadcast, that mentioning Sebastian Mila and the Chicago Fire.
This would not be the first time Mila has been linked with the Chicago Fire. Back in 2006, Sebastian Mila was nearly sold to the the Chicago Fire and MLS before a dispute was brought to FIFA against Austria Wien over whether or not they had the right to sell him.
Mila first gained international attention when he scored a goal that eliminated Manchester City From the EUFA Cup in 2003 while playing for Dyskobolia Grodzisk Wielkopolski. He has been with Śląsk Wrocław since 2008 and is currently the team captain. During his time he has scored 21 goals in 108 appearances and helped Śląsk Wrocław win the Polish Cup in 2009. Śląsk Wrocław are the current reigning champions in the Ekstraklasa. It was their first title in 35 years.
Below is a video of some of Mila's highlights. The very first one shown is his goal against Manchester City.
According to Dan Walsh over at The Philly Soccer Page, former Fire defender Bakary Soumare is asking the Front Office of the Philadelphia Union to trade him. Soumare's history with the Fire organization combined with Arne Friedrich's injury has created a situation were some people are speculating that a move to Chicago might be a likely scenario.
The Fire are lacking depth along the back line. Jalil Anibaba and Austin Berry made a fine center back tandem on Saturday, but, with Friedrich out, the only back up to Anibaba and Berry is Steven Kinney, who also happens to be injured at this point in time.
Whether or not the Fire would be interested in Soumare depends on the situation surrounding Arne Friedrich. Initial rumors of Friedrich's injury was that he would be out of the lineup for an lengthy period of time, possibly even the season. Now with Friedrich scheduled to return from Germany in less than a week, there is talk that he could be ready to play next month.
If Friedrich does return, there is good reason to believe he could get injured again and the Fire will be back in the same situation that they are in now. It could be good option to have Soumare on the squad in case Friedrich goes back down with another injury or never recovers from the one he currently has.
However, like Friedrich, Soumare is not a stranger to injury either. He has been struggling with a knee injury for the past year, starting back during his days at Karlsrusher SC. Standing at 6'4" and weighing 210 pounds, a knee injury could be a difficult thing for Soumare to fully recover from and could be re-injured down the road. If the Fire were to make a move for Soumare, they could be making an investment in another injury prone center back.
If Friedrich recovers and every thing goes well, then Soumare possibly ends up sitting on the bench in Chicago. It's hard to see him replacing Austin Berry in the back line. While Soumare may still have a house Chicago, he is not asking to get traded to another team to be a backup.
He [Soumare] said his situation makes little sense for Philadelphia either because of his high salary, which has increased from the $240,000 base figure he made last year.
"If you’re not using that guy, why keep him around as a third string (center back)?" Soumare said. "You can get a third string for a fraction of what I cost you."
That quote brings up another point - Soumare ain't cheap. If this deal was to happen, Soumare would most likely need to take a pay cut. Soumare makes the point himself that he's getting paid too much to sit on the bench. If Friedrich is able to get healthy, Soumare will likely find himself riding the pine in Chicago as well.
What do you think about the possibility of the Fire making a trade for Soumare? Would you like to see it happen? Is this a no go? Feel free to let us know in the comments.