There was so much promise this past MLS Season for Red Bull NY after reaching their first MLS Cup Final. Not only seeing them defeat the Houston Dynamo in the Goal Aggregate Quarterfinals and the one goal victory in the semi-final at Real Salt Lake, but also qualifying for their first club international tournament in the CONCACAF Champions League. Yet everything that was good, turned to bad at the start of the 2009 season.
Everything turned so fast from one season to another that the professor who we all knew as Juan Carlos Osorio just couldn’t find a way to change the fortunes of the club. Even when Richie Williams took over for the rest of the season as interim and in my mind did very well with a 3-3-2 record adding on to his first interim chance back in 2006. Well it looks like that might not be enough to give him the head position full time as new Sporting Director Erik Soler has wanted to go into another way.
Soler has said he would like someone from Europe who has or hasn’t had any experience in MLS. Sounds like trying to find a needle in a haystack but out of the blue from Ives Galarcep, the new rumors of such a man in that form might have been found. Former Italian International Keeper Walter Zenga. He had a brief stint in MLS with the New England Revolution as a player from 1997 till 1999 and in Zenga’s final season with the Revs as a player & coach.
While it sounds like a good idea to bring him over it’s a bad idea from the get go as he hasn’t been here for over a decade. The rumors from Ives are that he wants to return to the USA and if RBNY can keep Richie Williams as the assistant, then the coaching staff has been strengthened to bring in better players to help the club with a better season.
There were some discussions with RBNY supporters about bringing in Former Metro & AC Milan midfielder Roberto Donadoni as the head coach when he was sacked by the Italian National Team. Even then I said he shouldn’t be the next head coach. Not because I didn’t think he wasn’t qualified, but because he hasn’t been here since his two year stint when the league started in 1996 till after the 1997 season. I felt that since this league is not like the rest of the world, he should be hired as the assistant coach while hopefully Williams would’ve been the head coach.
Is this a smart move by Soler and the club to bring in Zenga? only as the assistant coach in my opinion. Richie Williams in my mind should be the man to prepare the players for this upcoming season at the sparkling Red Bull Arena. Not only is he a Bruce Arena disciple, but at the same time you could see him put his stamp on this club in his second interim stint at the end of the 2009 season.
Still, having a man like Walter Zenga as a member of the club is not a bad idea. His experience playing in the Serie A with some of the top clubs like Inter Milan & Sampdoria is priceless to a young & upcoming American player who wants to succeed in this league & a bright future for a possible National Team spot. But as I have said, Zenga’s return to MLS should be an assistant coaching position not the head coach.