Jan 21, 2013, 2:17 PM EST
(Update, 6:42 p.m. ET: Hearing from one MLS source that Paulo Sousa is the coach soon to be named, despite the cool response from Red Bulls officials when reporters asked about the former QPR manager and other potential targets today.)
I was encouraged when I heard about the Red Bulls’ new management and its plans to incorporate a heavy American influence among the hierarchy of deciders.
Sounds like a solid plan, right? If Red Bull totem pole topper Gerard Houllier and sporting director Andy Roxburgh do not have a deep grasp on domestic soccer, best to bring someone onto the coaching staff who does.
It seemed that Red Bulls, a historic mess of a franchise in terms of personnel bungling, was still on some reasonable path to stability.
But then … Well, this is not a good sign. At all.
Yes, Major League Soccer’s off-season was brief, by domestic sports standards, anyway. So perhaps two months is not enough time to turn up a good coaching fit?
Then again, Roxburgh presumably knew late last season that he and the Red Bulls would not be retaining manager Hans Backe. So, uh, what are they waiting for in hiring a new man in charge?
Presumably, Roxburgh did not intend to be down in Florida running a training camp, along with interim man Mike Petke. And yet, here we are.
The team has gathered in New Jersey for the procedural work (physicals, meetings, etc.) before the real work begins in Florida.
What Roxburgh said today about this increasingly curious circumstance:
I want to address the obvious things. We’re talking to a number of people, a lot with really interesting backgrounds, but we’re still in discussions. We appreciate the fans’ patience, but we don’t want to rush to judgment. There will be an announcement soon. We ask that you be patient just a little bit longer. We want to make sure it’s someone who’s available and who’s appropriate.”
In his protracted search for a manager, Roxburgh calls it “a matter of taking time and doing things properly.” Fair enough.
But if conducting a player draft (a valuable tool in every MLS club’s box of player acquisition devices) without a managerial direction, and if starting a preseason training camp without a coach in charge is anyone’s idea of “doing things properly,” then a whole bunch of MLS teams out there are doing it wrong.
Could it be that this interesting theory from Empire of Soccer is correct, that conflicting ideas are mucking up the process?
The Red Bulls are the only team heading to training camp without a head coach.*
So we’re trying to give some benefit of the doubt to the new Red Bulls regime, but this is not starting well.
*Toronto FC has a coach, technically, but, well … oh, nevermind. We’ve covered that ground.
Mar 8, 2014, 10:18 PM EST
They finished last year at opposite ends of the East. On Saturday, D.C. and New York both stumbled in their 2014 openers.
Mar 8, 2014, 9:34 PM EST
After a downturn in 2013, Houston’s main attacking threat has already bagged two.
Mar 8, 2014, 8:45 PM EST
The 35-year-old, four-time Best XI midfielder is left looking for his fourth team in three seasons.
Mar 8, 2014, 7:33 PM EST
CONCACAF Champions League mattered, Seattle will need more time, and Sporting plays to type in MLS opener.
Mar 8, 2014, 6:20 PM EST
On his fifth team in five years, Barrett delivered Saturday for Seattle.
Mar 8, 2014, 5:33 PM EST
Late match chaos produced 2014′s first point of drama, with the veteran journeyman giving Seattle a perfect start.
Mar 8, 2014, 4:21 PM EST
Bayern dominated once again, scoring six against Wolfsburg, while Schalke proved they’re still able to dominate matches by scoring four.
Mar 8, 2014, 3:59 PM EST
Four decades of soccer in the Pacific Northwest were celebrated at CenturyLink Field.
Mar 8, 2014, 3:06 PM EST
The Rapids finally confirm the man who guided them through the preseason would replace Óscar Pareja.
Mar 8, 2014, 2:40 PM EST
Big wins for Man United, Chelsea and Cardiff on a stellar Saturday of PL action:
Mar 8, 2014, 2:35 PM EST
Sporting’s title defense begins at CenturyLink Field, with MLS’s first game of the 2014 season available on NBCSN and NBC Sports Live Extra.
Mar 8, 2014, 2:27 PM EST
Goals from Eto’o, Hazard and Ba with two hands Chelsea crucial win, as title race intensifies:
Mar 8, 2014, 1:45 PM EST
Barca could find themselves in third place by the end of the weekend, after losing 1-0 to Valladolid.
Mar 8, 2014, 1:22 PM EST
American forward Johannsson does it again, scores beauty to put AZ ahead:
Mar 8, 2014, 1:01 PM EST
The Fulham manager is convinced that his side can avoid the drop. But is that sort of optimism misplaced?
Mar 8, 2014, 12:10 PM EST
Other sides fighting the drop will be thrilled that Stoke and Norwich split the points available at Carrow Road.
Mar 8, 2014, 12:05 PM EST
Massive London derby at the Bridge, can Chelsea extend their lead at the top? Watch live, here:
Mar 8, 2014, 12:04 PM EST
Fulham remain dead last in the league after losing to fellow strugglers Cardiff – who themselves aren’t yet out of the woods.
Mar 8, 2014, 12:03 PM EST
Saints seal hard-fought win, as Eagles continue to battle at the wrong end of the table:
Mar 8, 2014, 11:32 AM EST
Moyes’ offense clicks as United turn on the style against the Baggies:
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- Cardiff City 3-1 Fulham: Bluebirds win the relegation dogfight 0
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