Freddie Christiano's winning third kit design, titled "Heart… (Eunice Kim )
If Freddie Christiano ever calls it quits as an architect, he may have a career in pro uniform design.
The Chicago native was chosen as the winner of the Chicago Fire’s #cf97ThirdKit design contest, which called on fans to design a uniform for the Fire to wear during one game in 2014. The team unveiled the winner Tuesday night.
"The second best thing to playing on a professional sports team is to be able to connect with them in this way," said Christiano, a Loop resident, who said he had no idea his jersey had been chosen until the unveiling.
Christiano, 30, works at an architecture firm in Evanston and was persuaded by a friend to submit a design to the contest.
"Third kits are supposed to be unique, so I didn't want to do anything traditional," said Christiano, who went through five designs before submitting his favorite. "The black in the jersey was inspired by the Chicago skyline, and the blue wraps around the back to make a silhouette of the [Willis] Tower."
Christiano played soccer at Stagg High School in suburban Palos Hills and has been a fan of the Fire since their inception 16 years ago. He expressed gratitude for the fans, friends and family who voted for him.
Fire senior vice president Mike Ernst said the organization received hundreds of entries since the contest began in July.
"The organization as a whole has an indelible link to the city," said Ernst, 33. "We really like the incorporation of Chicago flag and the Fire logo."
The players are taking to Christiano’s design, too.
"Love the Chicago Flag on the sleeve!" Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson tweeted Tuesday.
Christiano has been invited to attend the Anniversary Game in fall 2014 in Portland, Ore., when the players will wear his design.
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