Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySoccer World DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America ClassifiedsGame Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
D.C. United sacks Curt Onalfo
by Ridge Mahoney, August 4th, 2010 1:42PM

MOST READ
TAGS:  d.c. united, mls

MOST COMMENTED

[MLS] This probably isn't what D.C. United fans expected and certainly not what they wanted when they clamored for the removal of former head coach Tom Soehn. In late December, United hired former D.C. player and ex-U.S. national team assistant coach Curt Onalfo to replace Soehn, whose record in league play was 36-31-25. The club fired Onalfo Wednesday and named assistant coach Ben Olsen to take over a team burdened with the league’s worst record at 3-12-3. 


“This was a difficult and painful decision,” United President and CEO Kevin Payne said. amp;ldquo;Curt is an outstanding person and a fine coach. This has certainly been a trying season, made more so by a number of factors outside of anyone's control. This decision is not about placing blame, but about looking forward. Recent performances have convinced us that we need to make a change at the top for the team to improve the remainder of this season, for 2011 and beyond.”

United plays Columbus in a U.S. Open Cup semifinal Sept. 1, so there’s something tangible for Olsen and the players to shoot for in what otherwise has been a disastrous season. Olsen, 33, a former U.S. international, spent most of his playing career with United before retiring last fall and taking a job as assistant coach. That he was regarded as the team’s spiritual leader during much of his tenure is mitigated by the inept team he inherits.

United has scored the fewest goals (12) and conceded the most (31) in MLS this season. It hasn’t won in the last six games and Academy product Andy Najar, 17, leads the team with three goals. Injuries have affected the team’s performance, but players added during the offseason – striker Danny Allsopp, midfielder Cristian Castillo, and goalkeeper Troy Perkins – didn’t provide the necessary upgrade in either quality nor results.

Some of Onalfo’s tactical and personnel decisions didn’t pan out. Moving Santino Quaranta from the wing to a central attacking midfield position failed, as did efforts to convert Rodney Wallace into an MLS-caliber left back. Wallace suffered a broken leg in June, thus depriving United of a very promising young player. Another in that category, Chris Pontius, has struggled through a painful frustrating sophomore slump.

The Olsen Era begins Saturday against the Revs at Gillette Stadium. One of the most likable, accomplished and determined men in league history is now in charge of a team far removed from its own glory days.



0 comments
  1. Eric in DC
    commented on: August 5, 2010 at 5:49 p.m.
    Our offense was decent last year. Defense sucked. In response, the front office dismantled the offense and lleft the defense mostly in place. What did they think would happen?

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
Concacaf Olympic women's qualifying results    
West Virginia University's Ashley Lawrence scored three goals and 16-year-old Deanne Rose had the other two ...
CCL Countdown: MLS's four clubs face daunting tasks    
MLS's four representatives in the Concacaf Champions League quarterfinals -- the LA Galaxy, Seattle, Real Salt ...
WCQ Countdown: Guatemala wins in Claveri's debut    
Guatemala warmed up for its make-or-break World Cup 2018 qualifying series against the USA in March ...
What They're Saying: Prince Ali    
"How are you then going to earn the respect of the entire world and players across ...
What They're Saying: David Villa    
"Right now it's better for me, it is important for me. As captain of the team, ...
Making a List: MLS All-Stars vs. EPL Teams    
The MLS All-Stars will face Arsenal in the 2016 AT&T MLS All-Star Game on July 29 ...
MLS player tracker with complete rosters (Feb. 11)    
In need of help in central midfield following the knee injury to Designated Player summer signing ...
Video Pick: How MLS All-Stars vs. Arsenal came about     
The best promotional video ever gets underway with Toronto FC's Sebastian Giovinco and Herculez Gomez, features ...
Making a List: MLS players on move to NASL    
Brazilian defender Adailton became the latest former MLS player to sign with an NASL team when ...
MLS player tracker with complete rosters (Feb. 10)    
The Philadelphia Union signed forward C.J. Sapong to a three-year contract. He led the Union with ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives