Fire

David Accam admits there are 'a lot of offers' for him, but doesn't give a hint about his future

accam-805.jpg
USA TODAY

David Accam admits there are 'a lot of offers' for him, but doesn't give a hint about his future

The drama surrounding David Accam may not be going away anytime soon, but while getting grilled by reporters about his future after Saturday's win against New England, he made it sound more likely that he could stay at least through the end of the season with the Fire.

After coming off the bench, and scoring, in each of the past two matches, Accam started and played 65 minutes in the 4-1 win against the Revolution. He admitted to some frustration over not starting those matches, but was happy to be back in the lineup again.

“You want to play every game,” Accam said. “For me, I’m just happy I came back today and helped the team.”

The Fire winger has created some drama in recent weeks with comments about how he was upset about being left off the MLS All-Star team by coach Veljko Paunovic, who selected 11 of the players on the roster. The story continued when his request to be sold abroad was reported.

When he also came off the bench last weekend in Kansas City that only fanned the flames of the rumors. The latest report comes out of Germany, where kicker is reporting Bundesliga club Hannover have made an offer for Accam.

On Saturday though, Accam returned to the starting lineup and helped the Fire snap a three-match winless streak. When asked about what changed with Accam since he came off the bench the last two weeks, Paunovic didn’t directly respond.

“We believe that the guys who are ready to perform and to give us performance obviously, but give us what we need in order to win the games,” Paunovic said. “We choose these guys to play. It’s always about the team. It’s always about trying to do our best to win.”

Accam said that the Fire have picked up his contract option for the 2018 season. That was largely a formality at this point because the Fire weren’t about to let him go for free and having him under contract for another year will give the team more leverage in any negotiations with a club outside MLS.

“It shows their commitment to me, that they really want me to be here,” Accam said. “For me, I’m happy they’re taking my option for next year. Just concentrate on the team and help the team win MLS Cup.”

Accam also admitted that there are offers for him. While he wouldn’t say if he wanted to leave, Accam’s words after Saturday’s game make it sound more possible than before that he will at least finish this season with the Fire.

“I’ll be honest there’s a lot of offers from teams,” Accam said. “For me it shows that I’m doing really well. I’m playing well. I’m playing on a good team and that’s just a testament of what we’re doing here. My performance is showing and we’re winning games so for me my head is still here and the rumors will always be there.”

Chicago Fire permanently sign midfielder Aleksandar Katai

katai.jpg
USA TODAY

Chicago Fire permanently sign midfielder Aleksandar Katai

The Fire have secured the transfer of midfielder Aleksandar Katai from Deportivo Alavés of the Spanish La Liga, the team announced Wednesday afternoon.

This season’s breakout playmaker has been signed with Chicago through 2019, with a 2020 club option. Before the transfer, Katai was on loan from Alavés, which was set to expire after July.

The Serbian player has emerged as one of the most important pieces of the Fire’s offense this season. Since joining the club on Feb. 6, Katai has scored eight goals in 18 league matches, tying forward Nemanja Nikolić for the most on the team. Katai also has three assists in 2018.

The 27-year-old’s biggest game of the year came against New York City FC last month when he scored two goals to lead the Fire to 3-2 victory. His production this season in the MLS has been much more significant than it was in 23 matches with Alavés, where Katai only tallied three goals and four assists.

His transfer fee is unknown but, according to Sam Stejskal of MLSsoccer.com, he will be a “Targeted Allocation Money player” for the rest of this season and will not be a Designated Player until 2019. Whatever the official price was, acquiring Katai for a lengthier amount of time seemed like a must.

Throughout this season, the Fire were rumored to be in talks with legendary Spanish striker Fernando Torres. On Tuesday, he signed with Sagan Tosu, a Japanese club. The Fire signed Katai the next day, showing that the team was possibly waiting for Torres to leave the market.

Chicago will face the Philadelphia Union Wednesday night at Toyota Park, where Katai will look to continue his impressive season.

Chicago Fire defender Johan Kappelhof involved in car crash on Thursday morning

kap.jpg
USA TODAY

Chicago Fire defender Johan Kappelhof involved in car crash on Thursday morning

Chicago Fire defender Johan Kappelhof was involved in a car accident on his way to practice Thursday morning that sent him to the hospital with minor injuries.

According to authorities and the Secretary of State’s Office, a box truck crashed into the Dutch player’s 2013 Volkswagen and another vehicle in the 5900 block of South Harlem. Kappelhof’s vehicle rolled over and two people fled from the scene.

The driver ran on foot and the passenger moved into the driver’s seat before driving the truck onto the Stevenson Expressway after the crash, officials said. After the damaged vehicle broke down, police say the same passenger tried to jump into the Illinois and Michigan Canal. Both were taken into custody.

Team officials said Kappelhof was treated and released from the hospital without indicators of a concussion. The 27-year-old was reportedly seen at Toyota Park after the crash and did not have any serious injuries. The other driver who was hit by the box truck was also treated, police said.

This season in league play with the Fire, Kappelhof has three assists in 16 games. The international product was a 2017 MLS All-Star and the Defensive Player of the Year for the Fire last season. He was signed in 2016 and has made one MLS Cup Playoffs appearance.