Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
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
Business Reporter: adidas to open store in Orlando stadium    
MLS sponsor adidas will operate the league's first in-stadium store starting in 2016 with the opening ...
Three takeaways from Manchester City-Bayern Munich     
The Champions League actually includes runners-up and third- and fourth-place finishers, but this Group E game ...
Marshall becomes first three-time top MLS defender    
In his first season with the Seattle Sounders, Chad Marshall has been named the MLS Defender ...
Copa America: Brazil and Colombia will meet again    
Brazil and Colombia, which faced each other in a hotly contested quarterfinal match at the 2014 ...
Referees grab the spotlight in MLS playoffs    
If the goal of a referee is to go unnoticed, the two referees in Sunday's MLS ...
What They're Saying: Sigi Schmid    
"I thought we benefited a little bit [from Stott's decisions]. In most games, I think that ...
U.S. Youth Soccer ODP Girls Interregional rosters    
The five-day U.S. Youth Soccer ODP Girls Thanksgiving Interregional began Monday at Spanish River Athletic Park ...
Video Pick: Rimando eyes third straight save award    
Real Salt Lake's Nick Rimando will become the first three-time MLS Save of the Year winner ...
Video Pick: MLS's 'best' Golazos, but no Cubo     
Fine goals from Will Johnson, Lee Nguyen, Obafemi Martins and Thierry Henry comprise the finalists for ...
NCAA Division I Men: Clemson completes Sweet 16 field    
Goals by Englishman Paul Clowes and Costa Rican Diego Campos opened up a two-goal lead for ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives