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Chicago Fire Weekly Notes

November 24, 2008 - Major League Soccer (MLS) - Chicago Fire News Release

Major League Soccer's 2009 expansion side Seattle Sounders will participate in a 10-round 2008 MLS Expansion Draft scheduled for the afternoon of Wednesday, Nov. 26. Each MLS team is allowed to protect from selection in the draft 11 players off their roster. The Chicago Fire chose to protect a mixture of veteran and up-and-coming talent, most notably protecting Chicago native Brian McBride, Designated Player Cuauhtémoc Blanco, the team's leading scorer for 2008, Chris Rolfe, and Panasonic MLS Goalkeeper of the Jon Busch. Forward Patrick Nyarko is protected automatically as a Generation adidas player while defender Bakary Soumare will be graduating from the Generation adidas program and therefore will not automatically be protected.

The following is the full list of the Fire's 11 protected players:

Goalkeepers: Jon Busch

Defenders: Wilman Conde, Bakary Soumare, Dasan Robinson, and Gonzalo Segares

Midfielders: Cuauhtémoc Blanco, Justin Mapp, Logan Pause, John Thorrington

Forwards: Chris Rolfe, Brian McBride

CHICAGO FIRE'S DIEGO GUTIERREZ HONORED WITH COMMISSIONER'S AWARD

Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber presented Chicago Fire defender Diego Gutierrez with the 2008 Commissioner's Award, given at the MLS Gala Awards Ceremony held in Los Angeles on the eve of the 13th MLS Cup championship game. The MLS Commissioner's Award is presented annually to the group or individual that has made a difference and contributed significantly to the league and the sport in America.

THREE FIRE PLAYERS NAMED TO 2008 MLS BEST XI

Three Chicago Fire players were named to the MLS Bext XI this past weekend including Volkswagen MLS Most Valuable Player Finalist Cuauhtémoc Blanco, Panasonic MLS Goalkeeper of the Year Jon Busch, and MLS Defender of the Year Finalist Bakary Soumare. The winners were unveiled Saturday during the MLS Awards Gala in Los Angeles on the eve of MLS Cup 2008.

CHICAGO FIRE TO COMPETE IN SUPERLIGA 2009

With a record of 13-10-7 (46 pts.) during the 2008 MLS regular season, the Chicago Fire has qualified to compete in SuperLiga 2009. The top four teams, based on regular season record, who are not competing in CONCACAF Champions League in 2009, qualified for SuperLiga 2009. Given these criteria, joining the Fire from MLS will be the New England Revolution, Kansas City Wizards, and Chivas USA. Dates, venues, and Mexican teams participating will be announced at a later date.

MLS ADJUSTS ROSTER SIZES FOR 2009

Major League Soccer has announced that each team will be permitted to carry 18, 19 or 20 senior roster players (at its option) within the overall salary budget. In addition, teams will be permitted to carry up to four developmental players (including Generation adidas players) outside of the team salary budget. Any team with more than four Generation adidas players carried forward from 2008 will be grandfathered with respect to the size of their developmental roster. Previously, teams carried a total of 28 players (18 senior, 10 developmental) on their rosters.

CORPORATE SALES ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE SIXSMITH EARNS MLS BEST XI HONORS IN TWO CATEGORIES

Chicago Fire account executive Bill Sixsmith earned MLS Best XI honors in two categories as the league recognized individuals and teams for outstanding contributions off the playing field. Sixsmith finished seventh in Total Ticket Revenue and sixth in Group Ticket Sales throughout the league. Sixsmith was honored with the other team and executive award winners during the MLS Awards Gala in Los Angeles over the weekend.

BLANCO LAUNCHES 'DIRECTO AL BLANCO' RADIO PROGRAM TUESDAY

"Directo al Blanco" a full-hour live radio program hosted by Fire midfielder Cuauhtémoc Blanco debuts this Tuesday, Nov. 25, at 6:00 p.m. CT. Listeners are encouraged to call and talk to Blanco about the latest soccer-related news regarding the Chicago Fire, Major League Soccer, and the Mexican Primera Division. The show will air every Tuesday at 6 p.m. CT on RadioCadena stations in Chicago (WRTO-AM), Las Vegas (KLSQ-AM), Los Angeles (KTNQ-AM), San Francisco (KLOK-AM), El Paso (KAMA-AM), San Antonio (KCOR-AM), Dallas (KFLC-AM), McAllen (KGBT-AM), Houston (KLAT-AM), New York (WADO-AM), and Miami (WQBA-AM).


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Major League Soccer Stories from November 24, 2008


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