CHICAGO (Dec. 10, 2019) – Chicago Fire FC announced today that the Club has signed 18-year-old Academy defender Nicholas Slonina. He is under contract with Chicago for the 2020 season with Club options for the 2021, 2022 and 2023 seasons.
"I am proud of the work being done within our Academy,” said Chicago Fire FC President and General Manager Nelson Rodríguez. “In the last three years we have clearly established ourselves as the best path for Chicago players seeking either a professional or high-level collegiate career. Signing Nick for the first team is the latest example and a likely precursor to more success in the near future."
A native of Addison, Ill., Slonina has spent the past four seasons playing in the Chicago Fire Academy, featuring at the U-14, U-16, U-17 and U-19 age groups. Throughout his four seasons in the Fire Academy, Slonina featured in 61 games (58 starts) while competing in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy. Slonina was also a member of the U.S. Soccer Residency program as part of the U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team during the Fall 2016 and Spring 2017 semesters.
He joins his brother, Gabriel Slonina, on the Fire’s 2020 roster. Gabriel previously signed a Homegrown Player contract with the Fire on March 8, 2019, becoming the youngest Homegrown Player signing in MLS history at 14-years-old.
“Nicholas is a solid central defender who is able to play under pressure with both feet,” said Chicago Fire FC Academy Technical Director Cedric Cattenoy. “He’s extremely vocal along the backline and is a very good teammate. Nick has been a leader for our Academy teams and we’re pleased to see him take this next step in his career.”
Chicago currently has five Homegrown Players on its 2020 roster: Jeremiah Gutjahr, Djordje Mihailović, Andre Reynolds II, Gabriel Slonina and Nicholas Slonina.
Below is the Fire’s 2020 roster as it currently stands:
Goalkeeper (2): Kenneth Kronholm, Gabriel Slonina
Defender (6): Jonathan Bornstein, Francisco Calvo, Johan Kappelhof, Marcelo, Andre Reynolds II, Nicholas Slonina
Midfielder (8): Micheal Azira, Brandt Bronico, Raheem Edwards, Przemysław Frankowski, Jeremiah Gutjahr, Fabian Herbers, Álvaro Medrán, Djordje Mihailović
Forward (1): CJ Sapong
Transaction: Chicago Fire FC signs defender Nicholas Slonina as a Homegrown Player on Dec. 10, 2019.