The Fire won only 12 times in 51 matches during Raphael Wicky’s reign. (Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports)
Hours after Chicago Fire FC blanked New York City FC, 2-0, Wednesday night the Major League Soccer team fired head coach Raphael Wicky, it was announced Thursday morning.
Chicago is in 12th place in the Eastern Conference with a 7-15-6 mark and 27 points.
Wicky became the seventh coaching causalty of the MLS season.
Assistant coach Frank Klopas will lead the team on an interim basis while a search for a new head coach takes place.
Klopas, who has been involved with the Fire in a variety of roles since 1998, served as the head coach from 2011-2013.
Goalkeeper coach Adin Brown will remain in his current position with the first team. Fire FC will appoint an interim assistant coach to the first team staff for the remainder of the season.
“I’d like to thank Rapha for his tireless efforts to make us a better club each day,” sporting director Georg Heitz said in a statement. “We felt this was the right time to notify him that we will not be exercising his 2022 contract option, as we begin to make decisions for next season. Rapha will always be a part of the Fire family, and we wish him all the best for the future.”
The list of MLS coaching firings include Gabriel Heinze (Atlanta United), Jaap Stam (FC Cincinnati), Luchi Gonzalez (FC Dallas), Marc Dos Santos (Vancouver Whitecaps FC), Freddy Juarez (Real Salt Lake) and Chris Armas (Toronto FC).
Wicky was named the ninth full-time head coach in club history on Dec. 27, 2019. In his two seasons with the Fire, the team recorded an 12-25-14 regular season record, finishing one point shy of a playoff berth in 2020.