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Fire COO Atul Khosla is reportedly stepping down next month

He’ll be leaving the club for a new job in the NFL

Photo via Atul Khosla/Twitter

The Chicago Fire’s Chief Operating Officer Atul Khosla will leave the club next month for a marketing job with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Crain’s Chicago Business reports.

The 38-year-old native of Oman has served as a club executive since 2011. As COO, Khosla acted as the head of the business side of the club. Fire General Manger Nelson Rodriguez will be in charge of the transition within the club and responsible for finding Khosla’s replacement.

Per Crain’s, neither the Fire nor the Buccaneers have commented publicly on the report.

A graduate of Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, Khosla spearheaded a number of initiatives aimed at growing the club’s business during his time with the Fire. He supervised the expansion of team-sponsored rec and youth soccer leagues in the Chicagoland area, as well as the $20 million, 100,000-square-foot practice facility on the city’s northwest side.

Khosla secured the Fire’s first local TV rights deal for all of the team’s games and was instrumental in getting the club’s current deal with CSN Chicago done. He also oversaw new initiatives to get more butts in seats at Toyota Park, most notably the Pub To Pitch program.

And as the report notes, Khosla’s portfolio expanded over the years to include some of the functions of club president, drastically redefining the role of the COO. He leaves the Fire as the longest-tenured executive since the club was bought by Andell Holdings in 2007.

Khosla will reportedly oversee all corporate sponsorship and marketing functions for the Buccaneers.