Count Real Salt Lake manager Jason Kreis among the coaches who believe the Portland Timers were quick on the ax regarding John Spencer, who was fired on Monday:
What Kreis just told Extra Time Radio, the MLSSoccer.com podcast:
Many prior occasions I’ve seen coaches get fired rather quickly. I just don’t understand it. It requires a lot more patience than that. We barely made the playoffs in the second year that I was coaching. … I just had an owner that ‘got it.’ I think I was very fortunate to be working for Dave Checketts, who had spent so many years in professional sports that he just knew it was going to take some time.
So that’s a very unfortunate situation, very painful for [Spencer]. But in the end, for Spencer to be with an expansion team only a year and a half, and he almost made the playoffs his first year. That says a lot. And he was still getting good results along the way this year, against some very quality opponents … It seems to me there was something else involved. In Merritt Paulson’s comments, it seems like there was something else going on there.”
As he said, Kreis knows about this stuff, and he’s talked openly before about the big learning curve involved, about the mistakes he made early in his managerial tenure in Utah.
At just 34 years old, the league’s youngest coach, the learning curve was especially steep. But he did lead the club to the playoffs in his second year (his first full season in charge), and a year after that Kreis became the youngest manager to claim an MLS Cup.
NBC News is reporting that at least 19 people have been killed and another 50 are injured following a possible suicide bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester.
Multiple senior U.S. intelligence officials who are monitoring British authorities told NBC News that preliminary reports indicate that a single explosion took place outside the arena on the southwest side opposite the train station. The explosion occurred as the concert ended, catching people as they exited.
Soccer personalities around the world are reacting to the horrible event.
If you didn’t realize Juan Cuadrado still belonged to Chelsea, you’re forgiven.
The Colombian attacker will complete his second season at Juventus after the UEFA Champions League Final against Real Madrid, and won’t be headed back to Chelsea afterwards.
Juve has purchased Cuadrado, and the fee is $22 million, and Juve will pay it over three seasons. Cuadrado, 28, is now signed through 2020 with The Old Lady.
Cuadrado first went on loan to Juve in Aug. 2015, and has eight goals and 18 assists in 83 career appearances with the club.
Chelsea bought Cuadrado from Fiorentina for around $32 million in the January 2015 transfer window, but made just 14 appearances with the club.
Sky Sports is reporting that Jermain Defoe may head back to the south of England following Sunderland’s relegation.
Defoe, 34, spent two seasons with Portsmouth between 2008-09, scoring 15 goals in 31 appearances.
[ MORE: ‘The Moment’ of each PL club’s season ]
The 56-times capped England striker had a clause in his Sunderland contract allowing him to leave the Stadium of Light were the Black Cats to be relegated, as they were this season. He’d have little interest in dropping into the Championship given his desire to stay a part of the England squad ahead of the 2018 World Cup.
Bournemouth’s strike corps includes Joshua King, who scored the most goals of any player not on a Top Seven side this season. King’s 16 goals were one more than Defoe’s 15, though the latter scored just one goal following a brace against Crystal Palace on Feb. 4.
Antonio Conte took league and national honors from the League Managers Association on Monday night.
The Chelsea boss was named Premier League Manager of the Year and Manager of the Year after leading the Blues to the PL title and an FA Cup Final in his first year on the job.
Brighton and Hove Albion boss Chris Hughton nabbed another Championship boss of the year award after leading the Gulls to the Premier League. He also won the honor with Newcastle United in 2010.
The League One winner is Chris Wilder of Sheffield United. Wilder won the honor with Northampton Town last season.
In League Two, Paul Cook of Portsmouth was named the winner.