I want to say I am shocked by this news but really when it comes to Toronto FC, anything can and does happen. Each year it seems as though the Reds get a new boss and it 2013 will be no different.
The club sent out a media advisory for a “major announcement” that is schedule for Tuesday morning. Yes, you read that correct, a major announcement, in the quotes and everything.
According to a report yesterday by Soccer By Ives, the club is set to remove Paul Mariner from his coaching duties and place former D.C. United defender Ryan Nelsen as the club’s new manager. This comes just hours after the news that technical manager Bob de Klerk has also been let go.
Crazy right? Nelsen has been playing in the EPL for the last few years with Blackburn Rovers and most recently with Queen Park Rangers. He spent five seasons in D.C. and won a MLS Cup in 2004. He also captained the New Zealand national team at the 2010 World Cup, in which they were the only squad to finish the tournament unbeaten.
He won’t be a player coach from what others are saying.
This is a fairly big change for Toronto. Going to a new coach that has no coaching experience is a massive change. At least you can argue that Nelsen has MLS experience and knows the league even though he left MLS at a much different time in the league’s history. There were fewer clubs and no Designated Players at the time.
It will be interesting to see what happens with Mariner after all of this. Does he stay on with the club? Does he go away completely? Time will tell.