Brian Howe Battle

Brian is a Chicago local, rec soccer failure, and Editor of OTFsoccer. You can find more soccer musings on his twitter handle @OwenGoal.

brian howe battle

Matt Bird

Matt Bird is a native of Manchester England, but has lived in St. Louis three years. Denouncing the myth that United fans don’t come from Manchester one country at a time. He can be followed at @matthewb76.


Daniel Casey

Daniel Casey writes about soccer hoping someday someone will pay him to do so. He writes regularly for Soccer NewsdaySoccer Without, and here at OTF.

Daniel Casey

Emanuel Corpus

Emanuel was literally raised in the shadows of Lambeau Field. He continues to face his inner demons every night as he tries to reconcile his passion for a Chicago sports team with his green and gold heart.

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Jon Denham

Jon grew up about seven miles north of The Harlem End. He now lives in Dubuque, Iowa, and may be its only resident with the MLS Direct Kick package. Jon’s the goalkeepers’ coach at Loras College, your go-to guy for t-shirts and promotional products at Envision Sports Designs, and writes some other stuff at Inclusive Beechwood Aging.

Jon Denham

Sam Fels

Sam Fels spends most of his time fighting off hypothermia and gushing paper cuts outside the United Center as editor and writer of The Committed Indian, the real Blackhawks’ fans program. He moonlights at OTF because it’s a nice escape from trying to explain why the Hawks don’t need to fight.


Scott Fenwick

Scott founded OTF Soccer in 2012. Scott has contributed to the Guardian’s (UK) MLS fan previews, and has been featured at The and in Pickles Magazine. Undoubtedly, he is America’s #1 Rapid supporter.


Austin Fido

Friend of the game and enemy of the passive offside, Austin is OTF’s USMNT & CONCACAF Editor. Austin also contributes to SB Nation’s Once a Metro.

austin fido

Nick Fox

Nick Fox grew up in Sarasota, Florida and has never fully recovered. A former tour guide in both Chicago and New Orleans, Nick’s also worked as a mule driver, a sailor, and a travelling poet. He’s currently working on a novel about gold miners and waiting for the White Sox to win another World Series.

Nick Fox

Vadim Furmanov

Vadim Furmanov is a long time Chicagoan, brought up on the North Side and currently situated on the South Side.  He is the co-founder and editor of Café Futebol and writes a weekly roundup of the Ukrainian Premier League for World Football Weekly.


George Gorecki

George Gorecki has been involved at amateur levels of soccer as a player, coach, referee and administrator. “I’ve been a lifelong student of the game and the soccer field is my classroom.”

Gorecki head shot

Lucas Hammer

Husband, dog lover, Chicagoan, Albany Parker, and unwavering Fire fan.


Jason Iapicco

Writer at Once a Metro and Host of the Red Bull Rant podcast, Jason bleeds red, but not for Chicago. He contributes to OTF’s USMNT Roundtables and can occasionally be spotted out in the wild.

Jason iapicco

Stephen Mangat

A gentleman among gentlemen and former Blue Hen defender.

Joe Maskivich

Joe Maskivish is relatively new to both Chicago & soccer in general, which makes him very suggestible. Basically he’ll believe anything you tell him. 


Shane Nicholson

Sycamore-native, beer drinker/hell raiser, Rangers supporter, and recovering Fire fan. Founder and Executive Editor of

shanetngeorgia 044

Ricardo Ortiz

Ricardo is the unofficial philosopher and firebrand preacher of the Chicago Word.


Juan Santoliva

Lover of the beautiful game.


Robert Suarez

“Coach Bob” is older than dirt, but slightly smarter. He mans his “Bobservation Post” high above a rural Indiana corn field, from where he proudly dispatches missives of futbol insight, experience, and opinions via his telegraph (with enhanced morse code, version 2.5).

bob suarez

Craig Tower

Baltimore’s Biggest Fire fan since 2009. I’m a former player and a Fire and US supporter. My finest moment as a supporter was going to watch the US in Italy in 1990, and getting shouted down in stadiums by US “fans” for trying to coordinate cheers. I’ve supported the Fire since 2005 when I saw Chris Rolfe score on AC Milan at Soldier Field. I’ts all been downhill since then, but come to a Fire game in DC or Philly and it’s likely I’ll be there. Follow Craig on Twitter at @modibo1968


Rob Thompson

Trader, coach, dad, and rabid Fire supporter.


Alex Unzueta

Alex is a Chicago native. Studying Journalism at Benedictine University while also playing on the men’s soccer team. Passionate yet agonizing Fire fan. His tweets are taken too seriously. Give him a follow @GolazoDeUnzi


Alex White

Alex White is a Georgian-in-exile who’s fallen for the Windy City, and an Illinois attorney—but for the love of all that is Good, do not get your legal advice from something you saw once on the internet, including anything he says.

alex white  

James Vlahakis

James Vlahakis is a passionate Fire Season Ticket Holder (along with his two boys), an attorney at a large national law firm (where he serves as outside counsel for the Chicago Fire Soccer Club), a semi-professional “tailgater” and a ‘keeper with Stare Byki FC. James hopes to live to see the US Men’s National team win the World Cup, but will settle for England. His views are his own.


T.J. Zaremba

T.J. was BarnBurner #110 and second half STH in 1998 in Section 8 of pre-mothership Soldier Field. After over a decade on walkabout, with a handful of guest appearances, he returned as a STH in 2011 and has been a regular (when his commitment to Uncle Sam allows it) at Toyota Park with his wife and the Hamster.

TJ Zaremba

2 thoughts on “Contributors

  1. I loved Ricardo Ortiz’ entertaining and perceptive analysis of the New England persona. As a long- ago outsider at Harvard I enjoyed the constant rivalries between the White and Red Sox as well as the Blackhawks and Bruins — always rowdy, never boring, and usually fought to the bitter end – and I’d love to see the same raucous rivalry between the Fire and the Rev!

  2. Pingback: On The Fire: Analysis. Insight. Fluff.

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