Coming off a season in which he found himself regularly out of the starting lineup, Joel LIndpere will have a chance to recapture his form with the Chicago Fire after the New York Red Bulls traded him away on Friday for nothing more than an international roster spot in 2013. Even considering the fact that Lindpere is likely due to make more than $200,000 this season, it's a little surprising to see such a quality player dealt away for so little.
"Joel is a versatile, dependable player that has proven himself in MLS," Fire President of Soccer Operations Javier Leon said in a team release. "He will provide a dynamic presence to our team in 2013 as we look to return to the MLS Cup Playoffs."
Lindpere is just one year removed from a season in which he started all 34 of the Red Bulls' matches and racked up seven goals and seven assists as arguably their most consistent player.
But Lindpere slumped toward the end of last season, registering just two goals and no assists in his final 12 matches to finish with five goals and five assists. Perhaps more telling was the fact that he only started seven of those games. With new leadership taking over the Red Bulls, it appears he was deemed surplus as the team looks to rebuild.
"Moving to Chicago will hopefully provide Joel with consistent playing time," Red Bulls Sporting Director Andy Roxburgh said in a release.
With the addition of Lindpere, the Fire should have one of the stronger midfields in the Eastern Conference. He'll join an attacking core that already includes Alvaro Fernandez, Chris Rolfe, Patrick Nyarko, Dominic Oduro and Sherjill MacDonald.