BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. (Jan. 26, 2019) – The Chicago Fire Soccer Club announced today that it has re-signed defender Johan Kappelhof, utilizing Targeted Allocation Money. The central defender is under contract with the Fire through the 2021 season. Additionally, Kappelhof is a permanent resident of the United States.
“Johan has always answered the call, and we are glad to count on his continued steady presence," said Chicago Fire Soccer Club President and General Manager Nelson Rodriguez.
Originally signing with the Club on Feb. 2, 2016, Kappelhof, 28, has made 95 regular season appearances (93 starts) for the Fire. In his first three seasons with the Club, Kappelhof won the most duels (346), interceptions (272) and tackles (122) on the team. The Fire’s 2017 Defensive Player of the Year, Kappelhof was also named to the 2017 MLS All-Star Team in his second MLS season, starting and playing 45 minutes in the team’s match against Real Madrid at Soldier Field on Aug. 2, 2017.
“We are very happy to have Johan back with the team,” said Chicago Fire Soccer Club Head Coach Veljko Paunovic. “Adding a player with his quality and experience, in addition to the time that we have spent working together, is priceless.”
Prior to signing with the Fire, Kappelhof spent five seasons with Dutch Eredivisie side FC Groningen, appearing in 123 matches in the Dutch top flight. Kappelhof also appeared in eight UEFA Europa League games during his FC Groningen career, including 90-minute shifts in each of their six group stage games during the 2015-16 competition.
A product of the Ajax youth academy, Kappelhof also appeared in five matches for the Dutch U-21 side from 2011-13, including four friendlies and a UEFA European U-21 Championship Qualifier.
Transaction: Chicago Fire Soccer Club re-signs defender Johan Kappelhof, utilizing Targeted Allocation Money on Jan. 26, 2019.
Name: Johan Kappelhof
Weight: 165 lbs.
Date of Birth: Aug. 5, 1990
Birthplace: Amsterdam, Netherlands