Friedrich signs Chicago Fire deal
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Ex-Germany defender Arne Friedrich has signed a one-year deal to play for Major League Soccer side Chicago Fire, he announced today on his website.

The 32-year-old made the last of his 82 appearances for Germany in June 2011 and was part of the team which finished third at the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™. The former Hertha Berlin centre-back was released by Wolfsburg last September after suffering a long-term back injury, but says he is looking forward to the new challenge of playing in the United States.

Friedrich is due to play his first game against Montreal on 17 March and has already passed a medical examination. "I am pleased to tell you that I will soon be putting on my boots to play for Chicago Fire," he wrote on his website having made more than 300 appearances in the Bundesliga.

"After long deliberation, I decided to take on a new challenge. Despite attractive offers from clubs in Europe and the Bundesliga, I decided to jump across the pond. As a big fan of the US, I am particularly pleased that my first club abroad will be in such a great city like Chicago."