Two MLS head coaching jobs are open and a third may be also if Sigi Schmid leaves Columbus to work with Juergen Klinsmann, whose employment as U.S. national team head coach is drawing near.
As to this possibility, Schmid said only, "You'd have to ask [U.S. Soccer
president] Sunil Gulati or Juergen." Schmid has stated he wants to
finish the job he started in Columbus but didn't rule out rejoining the
federation at some point.
Memo to Crew GM Mark McCullers: Start interviewing, just in case.
In Kansas City, according to sources, the following assistant coaches have been
interviewed: D.C. assistants Tom Soehn and U.S. assistant coach Curt
Onalfo, and Red Bull assistant Richie Williams. Also on the
candidates' list are interim head coach Brian Bliss, and - interestingly
- recently fired FC Dallas head coach Colin Clarke.
Soehn and Onalfo are in the chase for the FC Dallas job. General manager
Michael Hitchcock began interviewing candidates last week and both Onalfo
and Soehn were in town.
O, TORONTO. Head coach Mo Johnston is adding three Canadian
internationals to his roster, although their acquisitions may not be announced
until next week.
Bound for Toronto are defenders Marco Reda (Sogndal, Norway) and Adam
Braz (Montreal Impact), and midfielder Chris Pozniak (Haugesund,
Norway). Impact goalkeeper Greg Sutton is expected to be signed soon.
In Friday's expansion draft, Toronto FC can select up to 10 players. Each MLS
team can lose no more than one player and may protect 11 members of its 28-man
roster. Toronto will be able to sign three American players who will not count
against its allotment of four senior internationals; otherwise, the league will
regard Toronto's Canadian players as it does American players on the other 12
Developmental players can be picked in the draft but Generation adidas players
According to several sources, Johnston has also hired a former MLS head coach as
an assistant. Sources confirmed the coach's identity but only on condition his
name not be released. So we wait.
FAREWELL DINNER? Members of the ABC television crew, some of whom who
have been involved with MLS game broadcasts on ABC and ESPN2 for several years,
dined together Friday night not knowing how many of them will be working games
Production personnel who have been working MLS telecasts could be hired by ESPN
or replaced. They were contracted by the league, which in past seasons had been
producing games in association with Winner Communications.
Beginning next season, the broadcaster will fully control the content of game
telecasts and other MLS programming. Case in point: Dave O'Brien, who was
ripped for his performance at the World Cup yet in the last two telecasts of the
season had to manage both Bruce Arena and Eric Wynalda in the
booth while incorporating sideline reporter Brandi Chastain. Toss in
Rob Stone hosting the MLS Cup 2006 telecast (rather well, by the way)
Sunday. Not an easy task, or multi-task, as the case may be.
NUMBERS GAME. MLS has taken the first steps toward a 16-team league, its
stated goal by 2010, by adopting a 30-game schedule.
For 2006, there will be two games against each league opponent, with additional
intra-conference games filling out the 30-game schedule. With 16 teams, each
team would play each other twice for a total of 30 (15 times two).
Whether the league can expand that rapidly will be known by spring, when its
plan to add another team in 2008 can be evaluated. Two sources said St. Louis
has taken the lead for the next expansion city; Commissioner Don Garber
listed nearly a dozen candidates -- one of which was a New York City team that
first surfaced two years ago -- and carefully did so alphabetically so as not to
"rank" them "officially."