German internationals Sonja Fuss and Inka Grings arrived in Chicago last week, following the completion of the European schedule. Fuss, a defender, and Grings, a forward, whose signings were announced in mid-March, recently completed the season at FC Zurich, helping guide their team to an unbeaten run in domestic play that currently stands at 57 games and completed their time at FC Zurich with a 5-0 victory over FC Basel in the Swiss Cup final.
Fuss and Grings, both 34, arrived in Chicago May 21 and have been training with the Red Stars since. With a backline left very thin from the international call ups of goalkeeper Erin McLeod, and defenders Carmelina Moscato and Rachel Quon, as well in injuries to defensive midfielders Shannon Boxx and Leslie Osborne, it is likely that Fuss will make her first appearance in defense, while Grings will look to boost a Red Stars attack that has yet to find its shooting boots, when they head to Portland to face the Thorns on June 1.
Fuss and Grings, teammates at both FC Zurich and FCR Duisberg, as well as on the German Women’s National Team from 1996-2009, bring a wealth of club and international experience to the Red Stars, who look to shake them from their early season slump.
Fuss earned 68 caps with the German Women’s National Team, helping them to win the 2003 and 2007 Women’s World Cup as well as the UEFA Women’s European Championships three times.
Grings, the three-time German Female Footballer of the Year (1999, 2009, 2010), is the third all-time leading scorer for Germany with 64 goals in 96 caps, behind Birgit Prinz (128) and Heidi Mohr (83). Grings scored an astonishing 353 goals for Bundeslia side FCR Duisburg from 1995-2011.
Pairing Grings up to with forward Maribel Dominguez, Mexico’s all-time leading goal-scorer in international play, could bring a potent element to a Red Stars attack that has only found the back of the net four times this season.
More information on the signing of Fuss and Grings can be found here.
In other player news, Red Stars forward Lauren Fowlkes announced via Twitter (@LAFowlkes) that she was leaving the team to pursue her education.
“Just wanted to update my Tweeps, I’ve decided to hang up the boots in order to pursue Physician Assistant School at Northwestern University,” Fowlkes said. “ Although I know I will miss the game I love, I know this is an opportunity I cannot pass up. I want to thank my family and friends and all of my coaches, teammates (aka best friends) and fans for their support. Thanks for all of the memories! I also want to give a special thanks to all involved with the @chicagoredstars. I will be supporting you all throughout the rest of your season! ####”
Fowlkes made 4 appearances, all starts, for the Red Stars, registering 1 shot.