Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Petke: 'No one will be coddled'
January 24th, 2013 2:08PM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ
TAGS:  mls, new york red bulls

MOST COMMENTED

[MLS SPOTLIGHT]The Red Bulls searched the world for a new head coach, but they had their man on their staff all along. On Thursday, three days into its preseason training camp in Florida, it removed the tag of "interim coach" and named Mike Petke, an assistant in 2012, as its head coach for the 2013 season.

Petke's hiring comes almost 11 weeks after the Red Bulls announced Swede Hans Backe would not return in 2013. First, Scotsman Gary McAllister, then Portuguese Paulo Sousa were widely tipped to succeed Backe, but no agreement was announced.

There were widespread reports that their was dispute within the newly installed Red Bull management team -- general manager Jerome de Bontin, sporting director Andy Roxburgh and director of global soccer Gerard Houllier -- over the direction to take. De Bontin, the only one of the three with a background in American soccer, and Roxburgh were believed to want a coach with MLS experience; Houllier was thought to want an outsider from Europe.

Now that the search is over, the Red Bulls are acting like Petke was the only man the job.

“Mike had been on the radar and part of the selection process since, I would say, after the first few weeks,” Roxburgh said. “He’s charismatic, he’s well organized and he gets the respect of the players.  What’s very important in all of this is that Mike is very experienced in terms of the MLS.  If you brought a coach in from Europe, he might be experienced in Europe, but he would be totally inexperienced here in the U.S. Mike starts with an enormous advantage because he knows everybody, he knows the league and he’s absolutely passionate about the club.”

Why the lengthy search?

“We had to try to assess all options and we had spoken with a number of people,” Roxburgh said. "We had inquired about the possibilities of some others.  But whether people were appropriate, whether they were available, all the various things [didn't work out]. Right from day one, we actually thought we would like to have a young, hungry coach who could be adaptable and who could relate to this [league and club].  And right away, Mike checked all those boxes but I think it was appropriate for us to go through all of the process.”

Red Bulls' head coaching search:
Nov. 8:The New York Red Bulls are eliminated from the MLS playoffs when they fall at home to D.C. United, 1-0, and go out, 2-1, on aggregate.
Nov. 9. The Red Bulls announce that Hans Backe, whose three-year contract will expire at the end of the year, will not have his contract extended. Assistant coach Mike Petke is named interim coach. Scotsman Andy Roxburgh is named the Red Bulls' sporting director.
Jan. 2:Bigapplesoccer.com reports that Scottish coach Gary McAllister will be named the Red Bulls' new head coach with an announcement to come as soon as the same day and a press conference the following day or the day after that.
Jan. 7:The New York Post reports that McAllister is not in the running to be hired as the Red Bulls’ next coach. Videoton announces that Portuguese coach Paulo Sousa has resigned for family reason. Alexi Lalas reports that Sousa could be named the Red Bulls' coach.
Jan. 22:Portuguese sports daily reports that Sousa has taken his name out of consideration for the Red Bulls' job.
Jan. 24:The Red Bulls name Petke as their new head coach.



Petke, who attended Southern Connecticut State, spent eight years as a player in New York, making 169 MLS appearances as a defender. The Long Island native, who played another six seasons in D.C. United and Colorado, was known as a players' player, serving as New York's union rep.

“I’ve been around the team, I know the players,” Petke said.

The No. 1 question will be how he handles French star Thierry Henry, outspoken on team matters in the locker room, on the field and with the media.

"We have a good relationship," said Petke. "Before he came here I didn’t think anyone was as passionate about the game as I was. Whatever it is, Ping Pong, cards, whatever, he wants to win. I put him in the same category as guys like Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant in that respect. Nothing has changed. No one will be coddled. They are human beings and men and I will treat them like men.”



1 comment
  1. Steven McDonald
    commented on: January 25, 2013 at 1:17 p.m.
    For once Red Bulls are headed in the right direction. This pick really makes sense for a change.

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




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
What They're Saying: Sam Allardyce    
"Unfortunately, it was an error of judgement on my behalf. I've paid the consequences. Entrapment has ...
MLS Expansion: Jones gives thumbs-up to Martino hiring    
It didn't take long for Trinidad & Tobago striker Kenwyne Jones to tell the world he's ...
MLS Week 30: Results & Standings    
Montreal and D.C. United put themselves in line to claim playoff berths in the Eastern Conference ...
CCL: FC Dallas tie complicates path    
FC Dallas had to settle for a 0-0 tie with Guatemala's Suchitepequez at home in their ...
Video Pick (TBT): When Oscar Pareja dazzled on the field    
Of MLS's 20 head coaches, 16 are former MLS players -- so on this Thursday we're ...
What They're Saying: Hope Solo    
"Yesterday, I underwent shoulder replacement surgery to address an injury I've been dealing with for some ...
This week in women's college soccer    
The hottest team in the country is No. 6 South Carolina, which has run off 10 ...
Klinsmann puts stop to England talk, quickly    
Not for the first time, U.S. national team coach Jurgen Klinsmann has been linked to a ...
TV Report: Fox Sports to air U-17 Women's World Cup    
Fox Sports will broadcast all 32 games from the 2016 U-17 Women's World Cup in Jordan ...
NWSL: Heath and Long head MVP finalists    
Tobin Heath and Allie Long, teammates on the regular-season champion Portland Thorns and the U.S. national ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives