Daily Archives: September 3, 2013
Yesterday morning, the Columbus Crew announced that the 5-year Robert Warzycha era as the head coach of the Columbus Crew had ended.
Incredibly, after five years, nearly every single Crew fan reverted back to the first leg of the 2009 playoffs in Salt Lake City when Warzycha benched the Crew’s Argentinian star player, Guillermo Barros Schelotto. Columbus lost the game 1-nil. Recall that Columbus had won the Supporter’s Shield (for the second year in a row) and therefore was the number one seed in the playoffs. The expectations were high with an unthinkable repeat as MLS Cup champions on the horizon for Crew Nation.
And then the head coach benched the Crew’s star player. It’s been a long five seasons of seeing the erosion of the shine and jubilant celebrations from the Crew players and coaches hoisting the MLS Cup back in 2008 at the Home Depot Center in sunny Los Angeles, California. Actually, now it’s the StubHub Center, which only adds distance to the memories of the Crew’s magical season.
Through five seasons, Warzycha accumulated 70 wins. That seems like a lot, until you divide that number by 5 and discover it equates to about 14 wins a year. That translates to the Crew winning, on average, less than half of the games it played/season. And, again, recall that the Crew won MLS Cup in 2008 and earned the Supporter’s Shield for the second straight season in 2009.
Yes, Warzycha was the head coach in 2009. However, he was clearly riding the wave of momentum (Surf Ohio!) of 2008 and when he finally interjected “his style” just in time for the playoffs, the fans witnessed the precedent of what has transpired the past 4-seasons.
Imagine “Groundhog Day” with soccer.
While the Columbus Crew is not officially eliminated from the playoffs, it was looking nearly impossible under Warzycha. Hence, the coaching change with eight games remaining.
It must be said Warzycha was an effective assistant coach under Sigi Schmid and a skilled member of the Columbus Crew as a player (#19, “The Polish Rifle”). For that, we thank him and wish him good luck in his future endeavors.
Brian Bliss (the Technical Director) has been chosen to serve as the interim head coach.
However, now is the time to seek, find and hire a new head coach. The ideal candidate needs to have successful, professional experience (coaching and/or playing) and an effective and efficient style of play in mind while encouraging plenty of space and opportunities for creativity. The flow should be quick, smooth and exciting. The tempo should demonstrate control and purpose.
The new head coach needs to instill trust in the fans and generate a pulse on the field of a team fully capable and driven to winning championships again.
Ironically, Crew Nation would be quite joyful to see Guillermo Barros Schelotto on the bench again…as long as it’s in the spot closest to the center line.