Fire acquires Sounders midfielder Alvaro Fernandez to help with scoring
BY SETH GRUEN For Sun-Times Media July 27, 2012 10:58PM
Updated: August 29, 2012 12:27PM
Less than a week ago, the Fire, caught in a stretch of six games in which it had scored only twice, may have been asking how it was going to come up with goals.
That all changed over the last three days when the team acquired two high-powered offensive players to bolster its attack.
Following up on the signing of Dutch striker Sherjill MacDonald on Tuesday, the Fire announced Friday it had acquired Uruguayan midfielder Alvaro Fernandez from the Seattle Sounders in exchange for allocation money.
Fernandez met the team in San Jose in advance of its game against the Earthquakes on Saturday. Coach Frank Klopas allowed for the possibility that he could use Fernandez on Saturday but indicated it was unlikely.
Last season with the Sounders, Fernandez scored nine goals; he has netted two in 14 games this season.
‘‘It’s important to get a guy that can score goals,’’ Klopas said. ‘‘I think he’s very dangerous in all the games that I’ve seen him. He’s someone that gets opportunities. He’s very good in the air, and I just think he’s a very good player and someone that can come in and play.’’
Instantly, Fernandez will become one of the most talented players on the roster, but he plays a position held by the team’s two best players to date. Marco Pappa and Patrick Nyarko have been stalwart outside midfielders, and it would be prudent of Klopas to keep both in the starting lineup while also finding a way to include Fernandez in the first 11.
Nyarko started the season as striker and could return to that position. But Klopas seems more in favor of moving Pappa to the central midfield and keeping the team in its current 4-2-3-1 formation.