The summer transfer window has remained agonizingly quiet for Fire fans this July. To avoid twiddling our thumbs, last week, we took time to make some wild speculations on who the Fire might be trying to acquire. One name that fans have been high on, but was not mentioned in that article is long time US National team star DaMarcus Beasley.
In his 15-year professional career Beasley played in the MLS with the LA Galaxy (1999) and your Chicago Fire (2000-2004) before trying his luck abroad with PSV Eindhoven, Manchester City (loan), Rangers, Hannover 96 and most recently Puebla. Beasley has indicated his desire to return to the MLS, but unfortunately a return to the Men in Red is unlikely.
Jack McCarthy with the Chicago Tribune reported Monday July 21st that the reunion of Beasley with the Fire is improbable. In the report he quotes Fire technical director Brian Bliss as saying "We’ve talked about it, but the numbers are probably a bit out of our range. We’d like to pursue it but I don’t think it makes sense for us."
For the Fire fan waiting for a transfer of high significance, this quote is frustrating to hear. It sounds very much like the Fire front office remains unwilling to make a high-profile Designated Player acquisition. However, this is not the case. Beasley must re-enter the MLS through the allocation process which makes it difficult for the Fire to achieve. Similar to the difficulties that were discussed during the off season when the rumors of a possible Marco Pappa return were heating up, the Fire would first have to make a trade to move up in the allocation order and then tender a reasonable contract to Beasley. Currently Toronto, Columbus, FC Dallas, DC United and Vancouver all sit ahead of the Fire in the allocation order. What the Fire would have to trade to move up in the order combine with what they would have to spend on Beasley himself likely does not make sense for the Fire as an organization. The trade for an allocation spot would not be cheap (why would any of these clubs give up a shot at Beasley cheaply) and there are probably more productive ways for the Fire to spend this transfer window. It is unfortunate because Beasley would be a great asset for the Fire.
Alternately, if Beasley is making DP money, it's possible he could evade allocation, similar to the deals which brought Clint Dempsey and Michael Bradley back to MLS last year. In this case, the question shifts to one of priorities - on a roster strapped for strikers, and with room to add only one half-season DP under the cap, is Beasley a good investment if he cannot play up top? The opportunity cost of getting Beasley would likely be standing pat on a terrifyingly thin striking corps.
Still, Bliss's quote will likely leave a sour taste in many Fire fan's mouths. With the only moves made this transfer window so far being the transfer of Romanian international midfielder Razvan Cocis and forward Matthew Fondy, fans are getting understandably impatient. Sure these players are useful pieces for the Fire to throw into the mix, but Fire fans are waiting for a difference maker who will end the tedium and repetition of maddening draws.
Signs point to the Fire still being up to something with the space that was cleared on the roster prior to the Cocis move. So who will the Fire target? There are still no concrete rumors to report. We are all waiting on the edge of our seats.