With his reinstatement by MLS, Bruce Arena is once again allowed to work for the league. The departure of Wayne Rooney from D.C. United has created an opportunity for him to potentially take over the team.

MLS suspended the most successful coach in the league’s history after “inappropriate and insensitive remarks” and related allegations. An inquiry into the claims was initiated by the league and was to last six weeks. In Arena’s absence, assistant coach Richie Williams served as acting manager of the New England Revolution.

Even as they were about to wrap up the 2023 season, Williams’ status as head coach was first confirmed. But players demanded clarification over the circumstances behind Arena’s dismissal. They refused to practice under Williams, according to The Athletic.

The earlier announcement said that Williams would serve as temporary head coach until the conclusion of the season. However, club president Brian Biello later confirmed that this was never the case.

Where would Bruce Arena continue his managerial career in MLS?

During his time as head coach of the New England Revolution, Arena allegedly made statements that led to his suspension in August from Major League Soccer. Following the completion of the league’s inquiry, Arena resigned in September and was put on administrative leave.

But according to FOX Sports, MLS Commissioner Don Garber has decided to reinstate Arena, which means he will be able to return to coaching soccer in 2024. In addition, a statement from MLS said that the 72-year-old would have to approach Garber personally with a petition if he wanted to resume coaching in the league.

If the league were to open a position for head coach, Arena would likely be a strong candidate. Across the Eastern Conference, four clubs are currently without a head coach. Included in that group of four are the Revolution, who are not expected to bring back a head coach who left the bench four months ago. 

In addition to CF Montreal, the other two teams are the New York Red Bulls and D.C. United, the latter of which released Wayne Rooney before the trade deadline. Aside from the Canadian squad, Arena has coached all three of the other teams in the quartet.

How has Arena fared in his managerial career?

Arena is under consideration for the open coaching post at D.C. United, according to last week’s Washington Post story. In the 1990s, he won a CONCACAF Champions Cup and back-to-back MLS Cups with that squad before departing to coach the US men’s national team.

Rumor has stated that the American boss discussed a possible coaching position with Charlotte FC as well. On Tuesday, Charlotte revealed her new manager, Dean Smith, who formerly managed in the English Premier League.

After leading the New York Red Bulls and the Los Angeles Galaxy to three further MLS championships, Arena departed for a second time to take over the US national team in late 2016. The native Brooklynite guided the United States to their finest showing on soccer’s grand stage since 1930 in the 2002 World Cup, when they advanced to the quarterfinals.

He again led the team in the 2006 World Cup. But then, under Arena’s watch, the United States national team was unable to qualify for the 2018 event, the only tournament this century that he oversaw.