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New Red Bulls GM delivers a vote of confidence that certainly doesn’t sound like one

Oct 8, 2012, 12:36 PM EDT

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If this is a “vote of confidence,” then it might well be the worst one in the history of sports.

Here is what new Red Bulls general manager Jerome de Bontin had to say about the club’s head coach, Hans Backe, who suddenly finds the ground beneath his feet in Harrison to be highly unstable ground:

Unequivocally today we are behind Hans and we are going to be with him through the end of the season. As to next season, we don’t know right now.”

That actually made me laugh. Not because I want bad things for Backe. His ways lean toward unconventional at times, but he has put up a reasonable winning percentage at a place where most before him failed miserably to do so. I happen to think the guy knows what he’s doing.

The comment makes me laugh because this organization is cursed, apparently, with the ability to reliably derail any measure of progress in any area.

At a time when Backe and former GM Erik Soler have built a roster capable of competing for an MLS Cup, a statement like that can only undermine the effort.

  1. jerichowhiskey - Oct 8, 2012 at 1:25 PM

    No, Backe is good enough as a coach to bring the team to the play-offs, but not enough for the Cup. You can see the cracks during 2010 regular season (yes even though we won the EC Championship), and when it blew up at home in the play-offs against San Jose. You can see it throughout all the ties in 2011 and the culmination in the loss against LA in the play-offs. Then all the amount of goals allowed this year. No matter who Backe has on his roster, he cannot teach them to defend.

  2. mfishkin - Oct 8, 2012 at 4:35 PM

    Blow up leadership. Again. Start Over. Again. They should wonder why there are so many fans IN the seats. Not why there are empty seats.

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