The Chicago Fire and Club America of Mexico announced a partnership on Monday that will help both parties pursue diverse objectives and business growth for both institutions.
In a press conference, the Mexico City team explained that after months of negotiations between owners and executives, both clubs reached an agreement that will see each others' plans flourish.
The alliance will begin with a game featuring the Chicago Fire and America, which will be played Wednesday at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Ill.
This will not be the only game between the two. The "revenge game" will be held at the Estadio Azteca in a date yet to be determined. Besides just playing matches between both of them, they will also be holding other special events. The two teams will work side-by-side to establish business projects, put together special programs for players, summer camps and will hold soccer clinics in Chicago.
"The alliance between both our teams will be a solid one that will generate great benefits. We are sure of the opportunities that will open up if we work together. We both pursue similar objectives," said Michel Bauer, president of America.
The two clubs do share a lot of similarities. Both are pioneers of their respective leagues. America has rich history in Mexico including various titles and great players like Luis Roberto "Zaguinho" Alves, and also imported players like Zambian Kalusha Bwalya.
The Fire have also won their fair share of titles since joining MLS in 1998. They have been the platform for great players like DaMarcus Beasley and Carlos Bocanegra. But the person that bridges them the most is Cuauhtémoc Blanco.
The president of the MLS team, Dave Greeley, explained that both sides not only share a great passion for the sport but also for their fans and the development of the game.
"This collaboration with America FC will serve as a way for us to reach our objectives in the Hispanic communities, and also to grow our fan base," Greeley explained.