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Chicago Fire looks to goalscoring replacements

With the retirement of star striker Brian McBride and the departures of Collins John, Nery Castillo and Freddie Ljungberg, Chicago Fire are banking on new forwards to do their scoring this season.

The club has brought in Uruguayan pair Diego Chaves and Gaston Puerari in the hope that they will bring some attacking nous to Toyota Park. Technical director Frank Klopas was confident the talented duo could work very well together.

"Diego's more of a No. 9 - high upfield, close around the box and plays with his back to the goal, mostly," Klopas said. "He's not a small guy - he's around 6 feet. He's good in the air, but also very good with his feet and can hold the ball.

"Gaston can hold guys off, can play in the air, can play the ball in open space and can shoot.

"They have different qualities. And I think it's good to bring players together from the same country, because they have a good understanding, are comfortable and know each other."

Klopas said the club would continue to develop the two, and the remainder of their new look list, as the 2011 season rapidly approaches.

"It's important that chemistry has to develop, and it doesn't happen overnight," Klopas added. "It's a work in progress, and that's why we're emphasizing the work in training, to develop tactical chemistry. We're still not where we should be right now for our players to play 90 minutes. We have to build up to that. We're not physically ready."

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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