Benji Joya

Sporting Kansas City

Former U.S. U-23 international Benji Joya signs with Irapuato FC

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Benji Joya has not had the best start to his professional career to say the least.

The 24-year-old San Jose native has made 18 appearances since 2012, spending time on loan with MLS' Chicago Fire and Liga MX outfit Club Necaxa.

Through that time he scored one goal with Chicago, making 12 appearances in the 2014 campaign.

Sporting Make More Roster Moves

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Sporting Kansas City today got things moving on what appears to be a busy offseason for the club, announcing they'd picked up options for five players, declined options on five players, and that another six were out of contract.

The club announced that they had picked up options on Saad Abdul-Salaam, Benji Joya, Jimmy Medranda, Lawrence Olum, and Seth Sinovic.

Sporting KC adds former U.S. U-20 midfielder Benji Joya

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Photo by Mike DiNovo/USA TODAY Sports

Just ahead of the MLS roster freeze date, Sporting KC added to the club'sroster with the signing of a former U.S. Under-20 Men's National Team midfielder.

Sporting KC announced on Friday that the club has signed midfielder Benji Joya. The 22-year-old midfielder moves to MLS after spending thefirst four seasons of his career in Mexico.

Philadelphia Union

Facing Portland, Kratz signing, Barnetta, more news

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Union begin 3-game road swing in Portland on Saturday. Union add midfield depth. More on Barnetta. More news.

A Union rumor (finally), Adu out at Bahia, Western Final set, TV ratings tumble, more

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Agent connects Union with interest in Dani Cuevas and Benji Joya. Bahia to release Freddy Adu at end of season. Its RSL and Portland in Western Conference finals. MLS TV ratings drop. More news.

Chicago Fire

Dispatch: Chicago Fire (0) at Colorado Rapids (0)

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Sean Johnson taking a early breather (Credit Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports via Chicago Fire Facebook Page)

OTF contributor Daniel Casey harangues yet another Chicago Fire draw...

A midweek match is nearly always underwhelming. But even with lowered expectations this match was poor and dull.

Breakdown: Fire vs Galaxy

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Big Red says "Chalk up ANOTHER 1 pointer!" (photo: Abel Arciniega | Chicago Fire)

T.J. Zaremba dissects an encouraging performance, but disappointing result last Sunday...

Should the Fire be happy to grab a point from an essentially full power LA Galaxy on Sunday, or should they be disappointed to drop two more points at home?

OTF Roundtable: Chicago Fire Week 12

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Have you grown weary of scenes like this? (photo:

It's still early, but the Roundtable ponders a question many answered before First Kick...

Eleven games in, at 2-3-6 and looking at the roster, is 2014 already a rebuilding year for Chicago Fire?

Brendan Carr

There are not many positives to take away from this season, so far.

Breakdown: Fire at Crew

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T.J. Zaremba dissects the dumpster fire that was Chicago's performance against the Columbus Crew

Sometimes numbers are needed to tell a story, and sometimes they are not. In this case, perhaps there' s no data needed to expand on the 2-0 beating the Fire endured at the hands of the Crew last Saturday night.

Chicago Fire Power Rankings: MLS Round 11

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Each week, OTF Editor-in-Chief Scott Fenwick visits with the MLS pundits to see how they rate and rank our Men in Red...

HIT THE MUSIC!!! Aggregate = 12.5/19 ( +2.6 from last week) Fansided (5)

"Last week, it was Harrison Shipp that turned the tide for Frank Yallop's Chicago Fire.

Breakdown: Fire vs. Sporting KC

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Back in PanenKa form (photo:

T.J. Zaremba wades through the muck of Chicago Fire's ugly win over Screamin' Pete's Sporting Club...

The Men In Red are one late game meltdown versus Real Salt Lake from having taken nine points from last season's top three MLS teams in their last three games.

Dispatch: Chicago Fire (2) vs. Sporting Kansas City (1)

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"I'm telling ya, kid: you'n' me could go places..." (photo:

OTF's Alex White looks back at the Fire's pleasantly puzzling newstreak—a winning one...

Sunday was a busy sports day in Chicago. Both the Cubs and Blackhawks threw out the first pitch and droppedthe puck, respectively, while the Fire were kicking it around at home too.

OTF Roundtable: Chicago Fire Week Nine

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The gaffer unfiltered (image:

Back from break, the Roundtable looks at some Frank Yallop tape...

This week's Roundtable homework? Watch what follows and read the boys' two cents...

Brendan Carr

"It was piss poor defending." That was the nicest thing Frank could have said.

Breakdown: Fire vs. RSL

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Dread submission (desert

T.J. Zaremba has fun with heat maps, despite last Saturday's result...

In making my prediction for the Fire's matchup versus Real Salt Lake, I optimistically predicted a draw. The Men in Red had been able to draw against just about everyone during the campaign so far, thus I held an inkling of hope.

Prime Your Fire Pump: Chicago Fire vs. Real Salt Lake

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Chicago Fire hope to turn smiles like this upside down on Saturday night (photo:

OTF'sJon Denham searches for a path to points, and Wes Brown reminds us what makes Real Salt Lake tick...

Who doesn't love a spring break once in a while? After all, another stoppage time penalty kick disaster sort of requires a cooling off period.

OTF Roundtable: Chicago Fire Week Five

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Matt Watson's played admirably so far this season. Would he be in your starting XI? (photo:

Five games in, it's a Roundtable full of gaffers...

Four draws in a row.

At times the Fire are so close to victory, yet so far as well. The margins are indeed thin.

GAME THREAD: Chicago Fire vs. Philadelphia Union

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The Philadelphia Union travel to Toyota Park in an attempt to light 'em up and be on fire.

Toyota Park, Bridgeview, IL
April 5, 2014
5:00 PM ET
CSN - JP Dellacamera and Peter Pappas
Know Thy Enemy: Hot Time In Old Town
Starting XI
Quincy Amarikwa, Mike Magee Forward Conor Casey
Patrick Nyarko, Jeff Larentowicz, Matt Watson, Harrison Shipp Midfield

Leo Fernandes, Vincent Nogueira, Sebastien Le Toux

Brian Carroll, Maurice Edu

Lovel Palmer, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Bakary Soumare, Greg Cochrane Defense Fabinho, Aaron Wheeler, Amobi Okugo, Ray Gaddis
Sean Johnson Goalkeeper Zac MacMath
Kyle Reynish, Patrick Ianni, Logan Pause, Dilly Duka, Benji Joya, Alex, Juan Luis Anongono Bench Andre Blake, Ethan White, Austin Berry, Sheanon Williams, Michael Lahoud, Corben Bone, Antoine Hoppenot
Stats (Explained Here)

Dispatch: Chicago Fire (2) at DC United (2)

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Jhon Kennedy Hurtado opened the scoring, his first goal since 2009 (photo

OTF contributor Daniel Casey mulls over the Chicago Fire's third straight draw...

Nothing was pretty about the match in our nation's capital last Saturday afternoon. Chilly, raining, and windy, the conditions at the ruin that is RFK Stadium reflected the morass upon which it was built.

Chicago Fire Power Rankings: MLS Round Three

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Little by little, bit by bit (photo:

Each week, OTF editor Scott Fenwick visits with the MLS pundits to see how they rate and rank our Men in Red...

HIT THE MUSIC!!! Aggregate = 15.9/19 (+0.7 from last week)

"Still under construction, but in Benji Joya and Harry Shipp the Fire have young, talented building blocks.

OTF Roundtable: Chicago Fire Week Three

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Big Red giveth, but he also taketh away (photo:

Roundtable Group Three's back to mull over three weeks of Chicago Fire Soccer...

Perhaps it's a bit early to make definitive judgments, but through three games, has Frank Yallop and company met, not met, or exceeded your expectations?

Filibuster podcast episode 73: Spring is so lazy it can't get its act together

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On tap tonight: Courvoisier, Eight Point IPA, gin rickey, and the Champagne of Beers.

Filibuster - The Black and Red United podcast is back in your life once again, so rejoice at least in that. We break down D.C. United's game against Toronto FC, and go through all of the aspects where the team played poorly this weekend: attacking play, defensive play, and midfield play.

Breakdown: Fire vs Red Bulls

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The Fire offense may not be clicking, but at least the youth is getting experience (image:

OTF's Mark Rogers searches for signs of life in Chicago Fire's listless home opener against the New York Red Bulls...

This Sunday, the Men in Red looked a lot less like what we saw in Portland last week, and a lot more like the team we saw against Chivas USA to start the season.

Chicago Fire Power Rankings: MLS Round Two

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If you can't beat 'em, hack 'em (photo:

Each week, OTF editor Scott Fenwick visits with the MLS pundits to see how they rate and rank our Men in Red...

HIT THE MUSIC!!! Aggregate = 16.6/19 (+0.8 from last week)

"Message sent to the vets, maybe?

Dispatch: Chicago Fire (1) at Portland Timbers (1)

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Big Red converts the penalty (photo @ChicagoFire, Twitter)

OTF contributor Daniel Casey reflects on the Chicago Fire's first point of the 2014 season...

It would be wrong to characterize manager Frank Yallop's decision to change up the line-up for the second match of the season as a ‘shake-up.

Chicago Fire Power Rankings: MLS Round One

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Without Sean John, the Men in Red may have been cellar dwellin' this week (photo:

Your one and only Fire power rankings aggregator is back! Each week, OTF visits with the MLS pundits to see how they rate and rank our Men in Red...

HIT THE MUSIC!!! Aggregate = 17.

OTF Roundtable: Chicago Fire Week One

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Buck up, gaffer (image:

Some imaginary words for da new coach of da Fires...

Alrighty Roundtable Group One, let's get creative!

Imagine you own the Fire, and imagine you were at the game in Los Angeles on Sunday. In 250 words or less, what do you say to your newly-minted Head Coach and Director of Soccer, Frank Yallop, after losing to Chivas USA in poor, last-minute fashion?

Postmortem: Chicago Fire (2) at Chivas USA (3)

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Chicago Fire's Starting XI for Opening Day 2014 (Photo:

OTF contributor Daniel Casey on the Chicago Fire's first loss of the 2014 season...

There's always a reason to complain. Most of the time, complaints are trifles or mere quibbling based in faux nuance.

OTF Preseason Roundtable #3: Letters and Numbers

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You betta worrrk! (photo:

OTF's third group of esteemed Roundtablers close out the preseason with some grades and predictions for our Men in Red...

This week, the OTF Roundtablers put on their teacher caps and mark up their pick 'em sheets. Their mission:Give the 2014 preseason a letter grade and predict the outcome of Chicago Fire's first ten regular season fixtures.

Joya Ready To Make An Impact / Fire end preseason 7-1-0

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When Benji Joya came to the Chicago Fire on loan from Mexican side Santos Laguna, he knew it would be tough to crack a first team side that included the likes of Dilly Duka, Patrick Nyarko, and Chris Rolfe. His pedigree at Santos and hard work in Chicago would pay off though, as the young midfielder got a starting nod with the first team Wednesday afternoon, at a point in the preseason usually reserved for first team starters for the Men in Red.

OTF Preseason Roundtable #1: Looking back, looking ahead

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Coming soon to a Toyota Park near you... (photo:

Time to kickoff the 2014 season, OTF Roundtable style...

Greetings fellow Fire fans, and welcome to the first of many installments of the 2014 OTF Roundtable!

While we here at OTF clear out the cobwebs and get pundit-fit, join us now and think back to how you felt that Monday morning late last October, the day after our Men in Red, playing for their playoff lives, got the proverbial hornsduring their final 2013 regular season match at Red Bull Arena.

Joya nets winner in Fire’s preseason victory vs. D.C. United

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Photo by


Benji Joya is making himself right at home with the Chicago Fire.

The U.S. youth international netted the game winner in the Fire's 1-0 win Wednesday over D.C. United. In the 75th minute, Joya, acquired last week in a weighted lottery on a one-year loan from Liga MX side Santos Laguna, took a pass from Victor Pineda on the left flank and fired off a curling, right-footed shot past the reach of United goalkeeper Joe Willis.

Chicago Fire finds itself some Joya

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OTF welcomes back its original son Roberto Diaz who, in turn, welcomes the newest Fire man to town...

Benjamin "Benji" Joya

DOB: 9/22/1993

On Wednesday February 5th, Chicago Fire won a MLS weighted lottery and landed 20 year-old midfielder Benjamin Joya on a one-year loan (with an option to buy) from Mexican side Santos Laguna.

D.C. United

Fan favorite Rolfe traded to DC United

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Chris Rolfe is on the move one day after playing 6o minutes in a reserve match against Indy Eleven. The Fire have traded Rolfe to DC United in exchange for allocation money. After returning to the club in 2012 and scoring 8 goals, Rolfe struggled to find the net last season and was moved into a reserve role.

USA U-20 international Benji Joya signing with MLS - Will D.C. United enter the lottery for his rights?

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The central midfielder, coming from Liga MX power Santos Laguna, will be allocated next week via weighted lottery.

Remember all the tools to improve itself D.C. United had at its disposal entering this offseason - #1 SuperDraft pick, top spot in the allocation order and the waiver order, buttloads of allocation money?

Frank Yallop

Young guns win again, Fire stay undefeated in preseason

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The Fire lost their shut out streak but still managed to stay undefeated this preseason by defeating the Colorado Rapids 2-1 in Tucson, Arizona. Frank Yallop said he would play trialists and young players in this match and the "B" squad impressed yet again. A midfield featuring Logan Pause in the holding role with Victor Pineda, Harry Shipp, Benji Joya, and Grant Ward ahead of him had the better of the play against a combination of Rapids reserves and starters.

Fire head into last leg of preseason undefeated and unscored upon

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A 1-0 win over DC United this morning leaves the Fire with a 4-0 record heading into the final phase of preseason in Tuscon, Arizona. The clean sheet was also the fourth consecutive shutout for a team that struggled defensively for the better part of the 2013 season. After the "kids" got a chance to play against Orlando City SC on Tuesday night, the starters went 60 minutes against DC United but failed to score.

Shipp shines in 2-0 win over DC

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It's still early in preseason but Frank Yallop has to like what he got out of his squad in their first match of 2014 against MLS competition. He has to be particularly happy with the mostly young side he fielded in the second half that featured homegrown players Harrison Shipp and Victor Pineda, newly acquired Benji Joya, and trialist Grant Ward.

The Rest

Transfer Tuesday rumors - Jermaine Jones to the Fire?

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As the transfer window deadline approaches on August 6 things are starting to heat up in MLS and in Chicago. Those of you hungry for Fire news will be interested to learn that the local club has rekindled interest in USMNT midfielder Jermaine Jones over the last two days. According to sources, the Fire are one of several clubs courting Jones and are seriously looking to add him as a Designated Player.

Joya brace leads U-21 USMNT to victory over Tijuana

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The Under-21 U.S. Men's National Team wrapped up their training camp on Wednesday with a victory over Club Tijuana, and it was Benji Joya who delivered the goods for the Americans.

Joya scored a second-half brace to lead the U.S. to a 2-1 victory over the Xolos on Wednesday in Carson, California.

Fire win lottery for midfielder Joya

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The Fire's midfield competition got a little more interesting with the addition of Santos Laguna's Benji Joya via an MLS lottery draw. The US youth player was made available after signing with the league on a one year loan with a transfer option. Seattle and Real Salt Lake were also interested in acquiring him but the Fire had the best odds due to a lower finish in 2013.