After missing the playoffs, the Chicago Fire dismissed Frank Klopas as manager Tuesday evening according to a report from Goal.com.
Sports Illustrated’s Grant Wahl also reported on Twitter, Javier León, Fire President of Soccer Operations, is also on his way out.
Rumors have also surfaced that Guillermo Petrei, Vice President of Soccer Operations, and Rafael Carmona, Director of Scouting, may also be on their way out.
If rumors are true, everyone with direct responsibility for player acquisition will be let go, a sore spot in recent times voiced by Fire supporters.
Klopas joined the Fire’s front office in 2008, as the team’s technical director until he was named interim head coach in 2011 by replacing Carlos de los Cobos.
In his first season he led the club to a 7-2-1 finish over the last 10 games and he was named the manager by owner Andrew Hauptman at the season’s end. In the 2012 season, Klopas led The Men in Red to a 17-11-6 record and a playoff berth that ended with a loss to the eventual MLS Cup finalist Houston Dynamo in the Eastern Conference play-in game.
This year the season started their first 10 games with a 2-7-1, but Klopas turned around the club with the arrivals of MVP candidate, Mike Magee and Barkary Soumare in a trade. The Fire faded late in the season after a resurgent summer and fell 5-2 to the New York Red Bulls in last Sunday’s season finale.
Hauptman’s timing to dismiss Klopas comes at a poor time as today marks the 15th anniversary of Klopas scoring arguably the most memorable goal in Fire history. Klopas scored the game-winning goal in the 1998 U.S. Open Cup, the Fire’s first of four Open Cups. In four years as a player in the MLS, Klopas scored 13 goals and added 16 assists.
The potential replacement for Klopas are former Fire midfielder Jesse Marsch and former Chivas USA and Toronto FC head coach Preki (Predrag Radosavljević).