MLS: Fire oust coach Ezra Hendrickson after 44 MLS matches
The Chicago Fire parted ways with head coach Ezra Hendrickson on Monday after just one-plus seasons.
The Fire named Frank Klopas interim head coach for the remainder of the 2023 season. Assistant coach Junior Gonzalez also was fired.
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The Fire are 14th in the Eastern Conference after a 2-3-5 start to the season. The only club in the East with a worse record, the New York Red Bulls, also parted ways with their coach Monday.
Hendrickson, 51, finishes with a 12-18-14 regular-season MLS record after being hired in November 2021.
“This was a difficult decision, but after careful consideration, we felt that a change was necessary at this time as we work toward our goal of advancing to the playoffs and competing for trophies,” Fire sporting director Georg Heitz said in a release. “We’d like to thank Ezra and Junior for their efforts during the past two seasons, and we wish them all the best in their future endeavors.”
The club has now fired three coaches since 2019. Hendrickson replaced Raphael Wicky after the 2021 season, and Veljko Paunovic was fired in 2019.
The Fire have qualified for the playoffs just twice in 11 years — 2012 and 2017.
Hendrickson played in the MLS (1997-2008) with six teams and has been an assistant coach with three different clubs.
–Field Level Media
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