The Chicago Fire are on a winning run and Bastian Schweinsteiger's signing has broken the stigma that the club wasn't willing to spend big money.
So now when the Fire are named in rumors and reports, things are looked at with a more serious glance than in previous years.
The latest report is a fairly juicy one by MLS standards. A report out of Poland, picked up by NBC Sports, connected the Fire with Polish national teamer and Wolfsburg right winger/right back Jakub Blaszczykowski.
The Fire reportedly went after Blaszczykowski last summer, but he stayed in the Bundesliga and moved from Borussia Dortmund to Wolfsburg with a 5 million Euro transfer fee.
The 31-year-old has 90 caps for Poland and, even if he is past his prime, his resume and age indicate he would likely still be successful in MLS. The question is how would the Fire get him.
Blaszczykowski would likely require a high MLS salary. The Fire are full in designated player spots (Schweinsteiger, Nemanja Nikolic, David Accam) and are already using Targeted Allocation Money, the league's often confusing salary cap resource which can allow for mid-to-high six-figure salaries without a player counting as a DP, on Johan Kappelhof, Michael de Leeuw and Juninho.
In other words, if the Fire have interest in Blaszczykowski again this summer, it would likely mean another player would have to move first.
There has been question about the long-term future of Accam. Fire general manager Nelson Rodriguez has said there were offers from foreign clubs for Accam last summer, but the Fire turned them down. Rodriguez also admitted that the team has broken off contract extension talks, which took place during last season, until after this season ends. The Fire have an option on Accam for 2018.
"I will not be surprised that there will invariably be some offers in the summer window," Rodriguez said on May 23. "We have not received any as of yet, but just knowing that we had them last year, knowing that he’s playing even better, that he’s in the prime ages, we have an expectation that something will come.”
To sell Accam in the middle of the Fire's best season in years would be a bold move, even if it came with the addition of Blaszczykowski.
As far as rumors go, Blaszczykowski makes sense due to the large Polish population in Chicago, but other dominoes would have to fall in place first before the move is possible.