The Chicago Fire has been surprisingly active so far in this season’s summer window. Slowly but surely, they have been addressing the issues that has plaguing the squad. There is still one position that the Fire desperately needs to fill and it’s a new goalkeeper.
I’ve praised Richard Sanchez in the past, and to be fair it looked like he was improving at that time. However as of late, he’s making Matt Lampson look like Manuel Neuer or David De Gea. The confidence of Sanchez is down the drain and he’s making mistakes that are costing the Fire some needed points. Not all the blame can be pinned on Sanchez, but a lot of goals allowed are due to his mistakes. Someone needs to replace him as soon as possible if the Fire wants to salvage their season.
Within the club, there aren’t any other options. Stefen Cleveland isn’t MLS ready and who knows when Patrick McLain will come back. Outside the club, they were linked to Iker Casillas for a very long time, but we all know how that turned out.
So who should be in command of the net? Let’s look at three of them.
Pep Guardiola wants Hart out, and he himself wants out from Manchester City as well. Hart even said that there isn’t a league that he would turn down. Despite some questionable performances at Torino and West Ham United, Hart is still a good goalkeeper. Even at his lowest, he can be the best in the MLS. His performance last Friday against Borussia Dortmund was vintage Hart.
He doesn’t come from a fashionable team – the Philadelphia Union, but he doesn’t need to come from somewhere special to produce some amazing saves throughout his career. Twice voted as an MLS All-Star and selected the best goalkeeper in the league for 2016, he has the skills and the reputation to defend the back of the net. The Union won’t probably give him up, but anything can happen. The Fire can try to bamboozle them like what they did with David Accam….oh wait never mind.
Who is this Nakamura you might be asking right now. But hear me out. This guy is a gem. He plays for Kashiwa Reysol in the J. League and he is a beast out there. You might have some misguided perception of Asian football, but the J. League is the best in that region – and they do it without spending massive amount of money like their neighbors to the East. Nakamura was instrumental in helping his club with an eight win streak and was voted in the top XI for the 2017 season.