Thursday, January 12, 2006

Andy Herron gets six match ban; Diego Gutierrez returns to Fire

Chicago Fire's Andy Herron (pictured) will miss the first six matches of the 2006 MLS season due to his actions in last seasons Fire-Revolution Eastern Conference finals. This suspension will be without pay.

For those of you that do not remember, New England was up by 1 when the Fire scored a late goal. However, the offside flag was, correctly, up, so no goal was awarded. Herron was very upset and made physical contact with center official Terry Vaughn while discussing this issue. Herron won a red card for this contact. After the match ended, Herron returned to the pitch.

You might remember that a bit of a tussle broke out after that game. The Fire felt cheated and thought the best course of action was to assault the Revolution players. It really was a perfect example of bad sportsmanship.

Anyway, the lack of Herron in their lineup should not be something they cannot overcome, but it always hurts to have a player sit out.

In other Fire news, Diego Gutierrez is 'coming home' as the Kansas City Wizards have traded him to Chicago in return for midfielder Will John and a second round pick, the 19th overall, in the 2006 MLS SuperDraft.

During his four-years in Chicago, Gutierrez helped the team win the MLS Cup and two US Open Cups before being traded away to Kansas City. For John, he grew up in the KC area and his father has been the Wizards team chiropractor since its inaugural season.

Gutierrez's take on the move back to Chicago:
"I missed everything about (Chicago). From the minute we left Chicago, it was always the idea for myself and my family to come back and settle there. I feel there's no better place to play soccer. I truly believe that the fans in Chicago are not only the best fans, but also the most passionate, and I'm sure that will be shown coming up here in Bridgeview."

John's thought on going to Kansas City:
"I'd like to thank everybody at this organization (the Wizards) that has given me this chance. This is, obviously, a dream for me. It's pretty important to me now to be able to play here at home in front of my family and friends. I looked up to other players when I was here (growing up), and hopefully, eventually, people can look up to me. I think it's a good place for me to grow, and I think it's a place where I can succeed."



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