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Is Now Avram Grant’s Time to Move to MLS?

 Is Now Avram Grants Time to Move to MLS?

Last year, after Portsmouth fired Avram Grant, the rumor mill began to churn that his next move would be to MLS, specifically New York.  The former Israeli and Chelsea manager seemed like a good fit for an American club, having had much success in the Israeli league and needing a change of scenery after an ugly stint at Chelsea and relegation at Portsmouth.  Instead, he stayed in the EPL and took a position with West Ham United.

Now, however, West Ham is buried at the bottom of the table and looks like a lock to be playing in the Championship next season.  During today’s West Ham-Manchester City match Steve McManaman again brought up the idea of Avram Grant being the perfect manager for a league like MLS (which he described as a great up-and-coming league) and spoke of him easily finding another job if he were to be fired.  So, assuming Avram Grant is fired before the end of the season (which is a distinct possibility), could he find a spot in MLS?

Despite only lasting a season at Chelsea, Grant had a successful tenure, leading the club to within a famous penalty miss of a Champions League title.  His biggest problem was that he followed The Special One at Chelsea.  His career in Israel at the club level was quite incredible, winning the Israeli Premier League as recently as 2002.  And despite Pompey falling to the Championship, you can hardly hold that debacle entirely against him.  He is still a quality coach, but his reputation in the EPL has taken a hit recently.  So a change of scenery would be good for him, but in a larger league than Israel.

So, is MLS still a good fit in 2011?  Assuming that no one else is fired between now and the beginning of the season, there are only two job openings: Chivas and Toronto.  Chivas is in a major market and would allow Grant to compete with one of the league’s premiere teams and stars.  But Toronto would be a better overall fit.  The club is closer to competing for an MLS Cup than Chivas and has a solid infrastructure in place to maintain a successful franchise.  Toronto also has a sizable Jewish population, if religion were a factor.

What counts against Toronto is both leadership and lack of leadership.  The club recently hired Jurgen Klinsmann (the USSF White Whale) as a consultant, so I suspect he will have a major say over personnel and hires, such a major say that it might scare away someone who will want more control over the franchise.  This plus the fact that Toronto has waited a long time to make a hire for both head coach and director of soccer, which would give any potential hire pause.

What do you think: will Avram Grant manage in MLS next season?

11 Responses to Is Now Avram Grant’s Time to Move to MLS?

  1. Ibracadabra says:

    Grant was not fired from Portsmouth. He left the club as a free agent

  2. Simon Varley says:

    I dont think he will, or should move to the MLS. The system of transfers in the MLS is unique and not at all what quality managers are used to or looking for. Gullit was a prime example of a manager not being able to fix team issues or put his stamp on a franchise due to inconcievably restricted transfer rules. Avram….go to a small Spanish or Dutch club.

  3. Sylvester Sneekly says:

    will Avram Grant manage in MLS next season?

    As a West Ham fan I flipping hope that he will be managing in MLS THIS season!

  4. Flacotex says:

    I’m sure West Ham fans would buy him a plane ticket to New York tomorrow. Any MLS team contemplating hiring him would be insane, what has he done to show that he would be successful in a league like MLS? This is just more of ESPN soccernet rumor mongering.

  5. john quinn says:

    Avram Grant will get West Ham out of trouble this season ..He is an exceptional Manager.if you study his record…..He is also a very nice decent very humble human being….MLS would be very very lucky to get a guy of his quality…Personally I feel he will be successful with West Ham…and I dont see him going anywhere…..but who knows anything anymore in football

  6. GI Joe says:

    Avram Grant did a great job on Chelsea because Mourinho left him with a made team… that only need less confusion on the decision process.
    In Portsmouth, Grant had little luck with the club, because the ownership let the team die for itself, and there was nothing that he could do about it.
    Now, this year at West Ham is his own thing, and he is not doing a great job. End of January, he won’t be there for sure. So… MLS, well, for a coaching job, I don’t really believe, I would bet more on a job like Klinsmann.

  7. Charles says:

    Well I guess the good news is his team can’t get relegated in MLS.

    I am sure he is a fine manager judging by what some people above said, but there are 6 billion people in the world. I would find one who actually wins rather than loses.

  8. Dan says:

    There is no way that Grant would come to MLS. He wouldn’t want to drop down to this league and international managers cant handle the salary cap. Grant will get West Ham out of the relegation zone guaranteed, he needs some funds, he is an amazing manager.

    Also, saying that MLS is bigger than Israel league is a joke. How can you state that MLS is bigger than a league that is dominant in it’s country and is a regular in the Champions League and UEFA Cup, 2 of the biggest club tournaments in the world.

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