Chicago Fire midfielder Marco Pappa transferred to Dutch squad Heerenveen on Thursday, ending his five-year stint with the MLS club.

Chicago previously announced Pappa would move to Heerenveen after the season, but the transfer was pushed through before the summer window closed.

"This was a very difficult decision to make, however, we feel it is the best move for the club and the player at this time," said Fire President of Soccer Operations Javier Leon. "This transfer provides the club with flexibility under the salary cap and made sense as we look toward the future.

"Marco came into his own as a member of the Fire, he has been a big part of the club and we wish him the best in this next phase of his career."

Pappa, 24, originally joined Chicago on loan in 2008 from Municipal and made a permanent move to the Fire in late 2009. He played 112 regular-season matches, including 101 starts, and had 26 goals and 16 assists.

He debuted for Guatemala on the international level in 2010, and has played 29 times for his country.

Per MLS and club policy, terms of the transfer were not disclosed.