England preseason stretching

Chicago Fire Set Up Camp in Norwich

Chicago Fire Preseason Report

CHICAGO (Tuesday, Feb. 3)—The fifth-largest snowfall to blanket Chicago in the city's recorded history provided only a bump in the road for the Chicago Fire as the club embarked Sunday for its preseason training trip to England. After enduring a canceled flight, six-plus hours of blizzard-induced flight delays (documented by Lovel Palmer) and a two-hour bus ride, the Men in Red finally arrived in Norwich on Monday evening, enjoyed the first non-airline-provided meal of the day for dinner and hit the sack to rest up for the first full day of training.

Tuesday morning dawned bright and clear as the team gathered for breakfast and received the agenda for the day. In order to get the travel out of their legs, the team cycled through stations that included stationary bikes in the fitness center and stretching exercises in one of the hotel banquet rooms.

Following lunch was the club's first true taste of what was behind all of the travel headaches in the first place: a trip to Norwich City F.C.'s Colney Training Centre. A standard session by all accounts that included the requisite 5v2 and passing drills, the team concluded the first outdoor training session of 2015 with a number of small-sided games and took a cool-down jog as the rain started to fall, capping off a quintessentially English experience.


After a team dinner of old standbys pasta and chicken, the players dispersed for more bonding time that for some included watching Manchester United's FA Cup match on the telly and relax with a friendly poker game. The squad will be back on the training pitch Wednesday preparing for a Thursday scrimmage against members of their current host club, Norwich City F.C. The Canaries' First Team currently stands eighth in the Football League Championship with a 12-8-8 ledger.

Below is the full training camp roster as of Feb. 3, 2015

Signed Players
Goalkeepers (3): Jon Busch, Sean Johnson*, Alec Kann
Defenders (6): Adailton, Greg Cochrane, Eric Gehrig, Joevin Jones, Jeff Larentowicz, Lovel Palmer
Midfielders (10): Alex, Razvan Cocis, Patrick Doody, Collin Fernandez, Shaun Maloney, Patrick Nyarko^, Chris Ritter, Harry Shipp, Michael Stephens, Matthew Watson
Forwards (5): David Accam*, Quincy Amarikwa, Mike Magee^, Guly do Prado, Kennedy Igboananike

*Player is currently not in camp because of international duty
^Player is not in camp due to injury

Un-Signed Draft Picks
Kingsley Bryce, Matt Polster, Alex Shinsky^

^Player is not in camp due to injury

Guest Players
Albert Edward, Bryan Gaul*^, Nick Miele, Mark Pais^, Frank Songo

*Chicago Fire Open Tryout Winner
^Saint Louis FC player