FC Cincinnati is pushing hard to find the new coach, and according to the latest intel, they narrowed their search to just two names – Jaap Stam and Dominic Kinnear.
The club is without a head coach since February 17, when Ron Jans resigned after being involved in a scandal, which included alleged racial slur from his side. From that moment, the team is looking for a replacement, however, without any success.
It seems that there aren’t too many coaches willing to join the last-placed team from the 2019 MLS season. Still, the news broke out today, that Cinci aims to land either Stam or Kinnear. It would be a huge deal for the organization to get one of these two individuals who would no doubt have solid prospects of moving the team from the bottom of the table.
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Stam was arguably the best center-back of his era, establishing his reputation of a merciless defender while playing for several European powerhouses – PSV Eindhoven, Manchester United, Lazio, Milan, and Ajax. During that time, he won 15 trophies, among which the UEFA Champions League in 1999, the year when Man United won the famous Treble. He was the best defender in Europe on two occasions.
After a fantastic playing career, his first managerial job was at Reading, where he spent two years, leading the team to the Championship playoffs in his first campaign, but failing to reach the Premier League. Afterward, he took over PEC Zwolle in the Netherlands, in the moments when the team struggled to avoid the relegation. Stam would secure them the place in the top tier, before going to Feyenoord, where he decided to quit after just five games, leaving the former European champion in late October 2019.
On the other side, Kinnear is one of the most prominent names in MLS. He has four titles, two as an assistant coach with the San Jose Earthquakes, and two as the head coach of Houston Dynamo. Since 2017, he is with the LA Galaxy, where he performs the role of an assistant coach, wit the note that he jumped in as an interim manager in 2017.
His advantage over Stam would be the experience in the league, and knowledge of the system in the MLS, but on the other hand, the Dutchman is a bigger name outside the US borders, and he might lure some foreign players.
The general manager of the club, Gerard Nijkamp, is still evaluating all options and was recently saying that the current COVID-19 pandemic interrupted Cincinnati’s plans.
“The coaching search is part of the challenge. If we don’t know when we restart this league, it will impact when we appoint a head coach,” Nijkamp said. “In this case, the timing for getting a new head coach is key. I’m still talking with a few candidates. We’re delaying a little bit but not canceling.”
Also, there is important information that needs to be mention, and it considers Nijkamp. He was the technical director at Zwolle until last season, and was in the club when Stam saved them from the relegation. For many, this is a reason to believe that the famous defender will become the next head coach of the young franchise.
Nijkamp hired Stam once, and that paid off, so he won’t be changing his winning strategy.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.