While waiting for Jermaine Jones, Fire tie Crew
BY BRIAN SANDALOW For Sun-Times Media August 2, 2014 11:04PM
Updated: September 4, 2014 6:55AM
Whether or not Jermaine Jones joins the Fire, they need help to turn their season around. That fact was clear even before the 1-1 draw with the Columbus Crew on Saturday night at Toyota Park.
“If you go into the game tonight, sort of déjà vu. We’ve all sat here before and said the same thing,” Fire coach Frank Yallop said. “Frustrating, maybe didn’t play great, could have maybe gotten something more out of the game but didn’t.”
That refrain has become a habit for the Fire (3-5-13, 22 points). They took a 1-0 lead in the 37th minute when Mike Magee scored on a penalty kick but gave the advantage away in the first minute of the second half on a goal by Federico Higuain.
The Fire are three ties away from evening the league record of 16 in a season. To avoid that, the team needs help before the transfer window closes Aug. 6.
That help may or may not come from Jones.
Late Friday night, a published report said Jones turned down a three-year contract from the Fire. On Saturday, Jones tweeted: “Good Morning my fans! The offer of chicago fire honors me! There are rumours in the news. But all the figures mentioned are not the truth.”
Yallop said Jones, whom the coach confirmed is not subject to the transfer window, has not “officially” turned down that offer. Yallop said he spoke to Jones on Friday to “put forward our club” and expects an answer from the U.S. national-team and former Besiktas midfielder within days.
“It’s a good offer. It’s pretty much up there for us and for the league,” Yallop said. “I’m hoping he thinks about it and takes it. I’m not Jermaine. He’s going to decide, and I’m just waiting to hear back.”
NOTE: Midfielder Harry Shipp didn’t start for the second consecutive game. He replaced Grant Ward in the 57th minute.