Just days before the start of the 2012 MLS season, the Chicago Fire have signed former German international Arne Friedrich, according to the player's personal website. The 32-year-old defender was once one of his country's top defenders, taking part in the Euros 2004 and 2008 and the 2006 and 2010 World Cups.
More recently, though, he's battled a knee injury that has limited him to about a half season of play since the 2010 World Cup. That injury led VfL Wolfsburg to terminate his contract, just about a year after they had paid a €2million transfer fee to obtain his services from Hertha BSC. Friedrich has not played in more than a year.
Assuming Friedrich is fully recovered, though, this could be a huge signing. He'll immediately be the most accomplished centerback in MLS and could help shore up a position that the Fire really appear to be weak at.
For more on the signing, be sure to check out Fire blog Hot Time In Old Town.