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2. MLS: Arena takes Red Bulls by the horns
July 18th, 2006 2:24PM



The most disappointing franchise in MLS's 11-year history has hired America's most successful coach. Bruce Arena, five days after U.S. Soccer decided not to renew his contract, has been named head coach and sporting director of the New York Red Bulls, previously known as the MetroStars. Arena guided D.C. United to MLS titles in the league's first two seasons, in 1996 and 1997, and a runner-up finish in 1998, the year in which D.C. United won the CONCACAF Champions Cup and Copa Interamericana. It was the kind of success MLS would have liked to see from its New York area team. Instead, despite bringing in several big-name coaches and some of the league's most hyped international stars, the MetroStars never reached the final and appeared in the final four only once. The MetroStars became the Red Bulls before the 2006 season with Mo Johnston at the helm. Johnston was fired June 27, after which interim coach Richie Williams guided the team to one more win. With a 3-6-8 record, the Red Bulls have the league's fewest wins and are in last place of the Eastern Conference. Arena won five NCAA Division I titles at the University of Virginia before joining D.C. United. He was the winningest coach in U.S. national team history and his tenure included the USA's most impressive World Cup performance, a quarterfinal appearance in 2002.

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