Articles filed under Schwarz, Orrin

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  • For Fire, the Grazzini contract clock is ticking Jun 27, 2012 2:46 PM
    One way or another, Sebastian Grazzini's contract situation should be resolved in the next few days. Orrin Schwarz examines the options and provides an update on the injury front, the expected shuffling on the backline and more in this week's soccer column.

  • Will Fire decline to pick up Grazzini’s option? Jun 21, 2012 8:36 AM
    The Fire did not make Sebastian Grazzini available to the media after Wednesday's training session, a decision that seems to speak volumes about the Argentine midfielder's future with the club.

  • Fire seeks scoring spark Jun 12, 2012 9:02 PM
    For a team mired in mediocrity and in need of a jolt of energy, the Chicago Fire has to see the upcoming summer transfer window as an opportunity that can't be wasted. Major League Soccer allows its teams to each sign up to three high-priced Designated Players — also known as the David Beckham rule — and the Fire could use a player or two with Beckham's ability when the transfer window opens in two weeks.

  • National team struggling to qualify for World Cup Sep 13, 2012 8:39 PM
    If you're feeling a little seasick these days, it might be because you've been watching U.S. men's soccer this year.

  • Aug 23, 2012 7:48 PM
    The Fire's 4-2 loss to D.C. United on Wednesday was tough to watch, and the Fire can't afford to make performances like that a habit.

  • Fire not worried about its latest slide Jun 7, 2012 2:22 PM
    If last season proved anything to the Chicago Fire, it's that a midseason slump can be overcome.The Fire's slide the past couple of weeks is a concern but no reason for panic.

  • It may be time for a U.S. Soccer Summit May 16, 2012 1:46 PM
    Nearly 20 years ago U.S. Soccer hosted a "Soccer Summit," gathering all its constituents to develop ideas for how to develop soccer in this country. Orrin Schwarz, the Daily Herald's soccer expert, says it's time for another summit, this one focusing on the youth game and turning the focus to technical development from systems and formations and tactics. Japan has used that approach to become an international force.

  • Draw with one of top teams frustrates Fire May 10, 2012 1:04 AM
    Look at the Fires 0-0 draw against Real Salt Lake on Wednesday night at Toyota Park like an economist would the economy.

  • An MLS issue of protecting most skilled players May 3, 2012 9:54 PM
    Most of the attention this week at Toyota Park has focused on repercussions from the end-of-game scuffle Saturday night between Chicago Fire players and the Seattle Sounders. Fire coach Frank Klopas and defender Jalil Anibaba both are suspended for Friday’s game at Chivas USA (10 p.m. ESPN Deportes). But lost in the scuffle shuffle is the question of how much MLS referees are going to protect the game’s most skilled players, a question Klopas brought up in his postgame news conference Saturday. “I don’t want to complain with the refereeing because it all evens out,” Klopas said. “But you look at (Sebastian) Grazzini who is a playmaker, and he probably has the most yellow cards on our team. You figure that one out … he gets kicked the most and he never gets a call. “It’s not easy for other teams to get the ball but … it is what it is. You have to move on and sometimes things even out, but sometimes you feel that there are fouls that they do miss, and they call the second one out of reaction. “I think those things even out, but when you look at all the games we’ve played, Grazzini is probably the guy that has been kicked the most, but he’s the one that ends up with the yellow cards.” Klopas has a point. Grazzini hit the Toyota Park turf several times against Seattle but didn’t get a whistle. Seattle bumped him enough to take him off his game, and that helped the Sounders stop the Chicago attack in a 2-1 Seattle victory. MLS has made a big deal of dealing harshly with the kind of tackles that ruin careers, but it continues to let teams get physical with players like Grazzini, as long as they don’t get dangerous. “Part of it is the role that Sebastian plays when he’s the creative player,” Fire captain Logan Pause said, “and he’s so unbelievably talented on the ball. It happens all over the world where key guys get targeted. “I don’t think there are guys that maliciously try to take him out, but I think teams know that he’s a key part of what we do and stopping the play and bumping him is probably part of their game plan. “Listen, every other team faces the same referees that we do. It’s not anything different. We’re not a team with excuses. We just have to put our head down and keep plugging away.” There’s another part of this. Pause understands that he’s charged with making life difficult for opponents’ playmakers. “Some of it kind of comes with the territory, especially me being on the other end of that, usually trying to break up the other team’s more dynamic and creative player,” Pause said. “I know what that’s like. You try to stop momentum, you try to stop that player from being effective, and that’s all part of that game plan.” That’s something to remember the next time commissioner Don Garber says he’d like to see more scoring in MLS. ŸFollow Orrin on Twitter @orrinsoccer.

  • Fire’s Rolfe make immediate impression Apr 19, 2012 4:10 PM
    The volley cracked off the crossbar during the Fires training session Wednesday said it all: Chris Rolfe is back.

  • Rolfe addition nice, but Fire better not stop there Apr 16, 2012 10:12 PM
    Mondays long-rumored move to reacquire forward/midfielder Chris Rolfe is a step in the right direction, but it cant be the last step if the Fire wants to contend for MLS Cup this season.

  • Stalwart Gibbs’ knee injury hits Fire hard Apr 12, 2012 7:57 PM
    The Fire's move to add Arne Friedrich paid off when Cory Gibbs suffered a knee injury that will sideline him for 4-6 months.

  • More time off not what Chicago Fire needed Apr 6, 2012 3:44 PM
    The Fire wasnt too keen on having a bye the first week of the season, watching other teams play while waiting its turn to get 2012 started. Imagine the teams disappointment to have a second bye this weekend, just the fifth week of the season.

  • After two game, Fire playing to expectations Mar 28, 2012 1:43 PM
    Its a long season in MLS, the longest in league history, but theres no time to waste, especially for a team hungry just to make the playoffs. Here's a quick update on the Chicago Fire by soccer writer Orrin Schwarz after two games into the season.

  • Loss to amateur Michigan squad really stings May 31, 2012 7:46 PM
    Chicago Fire coach Frank Klopas wouldn't divulge what he said when he met with his players Thursday morning to discuss the team's 3-2 defeat Tuesday to the amateur Michigan Bucks in their U.S. Open Cup match.

  • Loss to amateur Michigan squad really stings Jun 1, 2012 6:37 PM
    Chicago Fire coach Frank Klopas wouldn't divulge what he said when he met with his players Thursday morning to discuss the team's 3-2 defeat Tuesday to the amateur Michigan Bucks in their U.S. Open Cup match.

  • Fire’s Nyarko ready to adjust his game Apr 27, 2012 4:31 PM
    Chris Rolfes arrival in Chicago could affect Patrick Nyarko the most, and Nyarko is OK with that. Now in his fifth season with the Fire, Nyarko says he'll play wherever he's needed to get Rolfe on the field in the Fire's attack.

  • Predicting the MLS Western Conference Feb 27, 2012 8:30 PM
    With less than two weeks until MLS First Kick, it’s time to get down to business. Here is a look at how the Western Conference shapes up, in order of predicted finish:

  • Will Pause be a part of Fire’s Starting XI? Feb 13, 2012 11:53 PM
    For 10 seasons Logan Pause has lived and breathed Chicago Fire soccer, rising to be team captain. But will he have a spot in the Starting XI?

  • Time for MLS to protect its best Feb 6, 2012 4:53 PM
    MLS needs its star players on the field, not on an ambulance stretcher. Don Garber has been MLS commissioner for more than a decade now, but in terms he can relate to from his NFL days, it’s time MLS protects its best, most technical players like the NFL protects its quarterbacks.

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