Photo by ISIphotos.com
The Bruce Arena era in Los Angeles is about to begin.
The Los Angeles Galaxy has hired Bruce Arena as the team’s new head coach, multiple sources told SBI on Friday. Arena will be joined on the Galaxy staff by former Chicago Fire head coach Dave Sarachan, who served as Arena’s assistant with the national team during the 2002 World Cup.
Arena’s first game as Galaxy head coach is expected to be the team’s Aug. 21 home game against the Chicago Fire.
The news comes as little surprise following Arena’s appearance at Home Depot Center on Thursday night for the Galaxy’s 2-2 tie vs. Chivas USA, adding fuel to the rumors that he was being lined up to replace departed Galaxy head coach Ruud Gullit. When Tim Leiweke sang Arena’s praises during the ESPN broadcast of the LA-Chivas USA match, it became clear that the job was Arena’s to take.
On Friday, he took it.
Arena met with AEG president Tim Leiweke on Thursday to discuss the state of the Galaxy as a club and Leiweke called Arena the best candidate for the job when asked about Arena during the ESPN broadcast of the Galaxy-Chivas USA game.
"No bones about it, if I could convince Bruce to join AEG and join the Galaxy, he’d be the ideal guy to come in here," Leiweke said. "There’s not a better candidate. There’s not a better potential coach. He knows more about the game. I have more respect, Mr. Anschutz has great respect for Bruce, so we’d be honored to have him.”
According to sources, Arena will bring in Sarachan to be his lead assistant. Sarachan was Arena’s lead assistant at the 2002 World Cup and has been most recently working with U.S. Soccer in the player development field.
Arena revealed his desire to return to coaching back in May, admitting that he had turned down a coaching offer last off-season.
So what do you think of Arena taking over as Galaxy head coach? Is he the man to help turn things around in LA? Will he struggle like he did with the Red Bulls? Will Arena’s arrival lead to Landon Donovan sticking around? Could the Galaxy pull off a miracle MLS Cup run?
Share your thoughts below.