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Andres Guardado could have his choice of MLS suitors

Competition for Atlanta United for Principito’s signature

FC Eindhoven v PSV Eindhoven - Friendly Match Photo by Christof Koepsel/Getty Images

ESPN’s John Sutcliffe followed the Mexican national team this summer, and discussed Andres Guardado’s imminent arrival to Major League Soccer and to Atlanta.

When the summer transfer window came and went without updates, many assumed that Guardado will remain with PSV in the Netherlands for the foreseeable future.

Guillermo Rivera of Chicago Fire Confidential mentioned today that league sources said Atlanta United is “set to make a press for him” and the two LA teams are also interested in Guardado’s services. This was in his piece on rumors linking Bastian Schweinsteiger to the Fire.

Rivera also said that Chicago holds the Discovery rights on Schweinsteiger and Guardado.

Chicago is in a tough spot heading into the offseason. The Fire desperately need to make a big move this winter to regain relevance in the Chicago market that they have lacked since Cuauhtémoc Blanco left the club in 2009. They have only made one playoff appearance since Blanco’s departure and the fanbase is demanding a change.

The Fire have amassed quite a stash of allocation money recently, with a chunk coming when they gave up the rights to the top spot in the MLS allocation order to Philadelphia to sign Alejandro Bedoya. They previously were unable to close deals with Jermaine Jones and Didier Drogba.

Chicago has to make a splash this winter and Guardado, or Schweinsteiger, would accomplish that. They need to make a move to energize their fanbase, and trading a top player’s rights will not do that. Chicago needs a move like this, but they might not be able to compete with Atlanta or Los Angeles on Andres Guardado.

Can Atlanta United compete with Chicago’s desperation or the appeal of Los Angeles?