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Chicago Fire president Leon, head coach Klopas step down

Official release from Chicago Fire

The Chicago Fire Soccer Club announced today that President of Soccer Operations Javier Leon and Head Coach Frank Klopas have stepped down effective immediately. The Club commences a search for new leadership today.

"I thank Javier for his steadfast commitment and dedication to the Fire the past six years," said Chicago Fire owner Andrew Hauptman. "He has worked tirelessly on behalf of the Club and I want to express my deepest gratitude for his efforts."

Hauptman said Klopas will always be a Chicago soccer icon.

"No one appreciates Frank's passion, integrity and competitive spirit more than me," said Hauptman. "Frank has been a big part of this organization for many years as a player, Ring of Fire member, technical director and coach. I want to personally thank him for his efforts over this period. He is a wonderful friend and will always be a member of the Fire family."

"There have been many highlights over these years but I think now is an appropriate time to make a transition to new leadership. Of course, making this team compete for championships on a consistent basis is our first priority," said Hauptman.

No timetable has been set.

Leon and Klopas had been with the Fire since 2008. Klopas began his tenure with the Club as Technical Director in 2008 and assumed the role of Head Coach in 2011. Under their leadership in 2013, the Fire finished just out of the playoff race with a 14-13-7 record but losing to the Montreal Impact on MLS' second tiebreaker (goals scored).

"I want to thank our fans for their unbridled support and energy as this team continued to make steady improvements through the season. We are very much looking forward to 2014 and beyond," said Hauptman.

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