CHICAGO (Nov. 13, 2023) – Chicago Fire FC today announced that five players have joined their respective national team for the FIFA international break in November. Midfielders Xherdan Shaqiri and Gastón Giménez joined the Switzerland National Team and Paraguay National team, respectively, and defender Miguel Navarro joined the Venezuela National Team. Additionally, forward Georgios Koutsias joined the Greece U-21 National Team and Homegrown goalkeeper Chris Brady joined the U.S. Men’s Olympic Team.
Shaqiri and the Swiss Men’s Nati will play three matches in EURO 2024 qualifying. Switzerland’s Matchday 7 contest against Israel originally schedule for Thursday, Oct. 12, will be played at 1:45 p.m. CT on Wednesday, Nov. 15 at Pancho Arena in Felcsút, Hungary. Switzerland will then play host to Kosovo at 1:45 p.m. CT on Saturday, Nov. 18 at St. Jakob-Park in Basel before traveling to face Romania at 1:45 p.m. CT on Tuesday, Nov. 21 at the National Arena in Bucharest, Romania. Switzerland currently sits in second place in the Group I standings with 15 points, one point less than Romania with one less match played.
Giménez returns to an Albirroja squad in the midst of qualifying for the 2026 FIFA World Cup. Paraguay will face Chile at 6:30 p.m. CT on Thursday, Nov. 16 at the Estadio Monumental David Arellano in Macul, Chile. The team will then host Colombia at 5 p.m. CT on Tuesday, Nov. 21 at the Estadio Defensores del Chaco in Asuncion, Paraguay. Giménez and Paraguay split points in the previous international window, falling 1-0 Argentina on the road before defeating Bolivia 1-0 at home.
Navarro joins the Vinotinto for a third consecutive international window. After tying Brazil 1-1 and defeating Chile 3-0 in October, Venezuela looks to keep their good form as they host Ecuador at 4 p.m. CT on Thursday, Nov. 16, at the Estadio Monumental de Maturín in Maturín, Venezuela. The team then travels to face Peru at 8 p.m. CT on Tuesday, Nov. 21 at the Estadio Nacional de Lima in Lima, Peru. Venezuela has seven points and is currently in fourth place in Conmebol qualifying for the 2026 FIFA World Cup, behind Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina.
Koutsias and the Greece U-21 National Team are currently in fourth place in Group G standings in the UEFA EURO U-21 qualifying tournament. Greece is currently two points behind the Faroe Islands, who they face at 8 a.m. CT on Thursday, Nov. 16. The team will then host first-place Portugal at 8 a.m. CT on Monday, Nov. 20. Both matches will take place at Theodoros Kolokotronis Stadium in Tripoli, Greece.
Brady joins the U.S. Men’s Olympic Team for a training camp in San Pedro del Pinatar, Spain from Nov. 12-22. Led by head coach Marko Mitrović, the team will play a series of friendly matches as preparations continue for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris, France. The USA qualified for its first Olympic Men’s Football Tournament in 16 years with a dominant performance at the 2022 Concacaf U-20 Championship after. There, the U.S. topped host Honduras 3-0 before a raucous crowd in San Pedro Sula to secure its Olympic berth and Brady was awarded the Golden Glove as the top goalkeeper of the tournament.