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Berry to train with Atletico Madrid

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Jalil Anibaba will not be the only member of the Chicago Fire training with Atletico Madrid in the coming weeks.

Austin Berry, the recently-named 2012 MLS Rookie of the Year, will join Anibaba as Fire players who will practice alongside the likes of red-hot striker Radamel Falcao and centerback Diego Godin at Atletico this offseason. Berry will begin a two-week training stint with the reigning Europa League champions on Nov. 25 and it will end on Dec. 9, the Fire announced on Friday.

Chicago had announced Monday that Anibaba would train with the La Liga club on a two-week stint that runs from Nov. 18 through Dec. 2.

What do you think of Berry training with Atletico Madrid? Think he and Anibaba will learn a lot from playing against the likes of Falcao? Should the Fire should send all of their defenders there?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. It is also part of how Atletico develops and scouts new talent. They used to have their own development academy in San Rafael (in the mountains, an hour outside of Madrid), but economic pressures dictated that they close their training academy about 10 years ago. So not only is it a great opportunity for these young Chicago Fire players, but it is also one of the veins feeding Atletico’s youth and talent development.

  2. Why is it that any time an MLS player gets sent to a team for training people just can’t see it for what it is…..TRAINING. Not whether they’ll make the team….TRAINING.
    “Is he eligible”…..”he won’t make the team”…..”he’ll be practicing with the reserves”……Why do you think a team like Chicago Fire sent 2 of their promising DEFENDERS to ATLETICO MADRID? To see whether they can make some money off them? NO. To take their defenders to the next level of play, to develop their skills and ways of thinking like a top La Liga defender, for them to train and defend against a technically sound and organized attacking system, and bring that knowledge back to camp and work of their defense. They are just just building on an area which they know they are weak in (although 48 GF and 41 GA isn’t too bad)

  3. A lot of Americans go abroad for training stints. How are these organized or does this mean the club wants a closer look at the talent without having to sign the player?

  4. Its pretty obvious the fire and the union coaches/executives have some connections….those youngsters are very lucky! Heres to them bringing back some good things from the experience and there’s always a chance (no matter how slim) that they catch the eye of the right person while over there.

  5. The real question is: is he eligible in some way for a EU passport?

    If not, this is a whole lot of nothing and just a good experience.

  6. He will be training with the reserves but maybe he can get some autographs. Seriously it’s a nice opportunity for some additonal training going into next season but it will be with the reserves that’s just how it is.


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