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D.C. United in scramble mode as coaching search stalls

John Spencer 1 ( Frank Yallop ( 

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Just a day after having Akron head coach Caleb Porter turn down the job, D.C. United has now missed on two other potential candidates for the position.

D.C. United was turned down by the San Jose Earthquakes after requesting permission to speak to head coach Frank Yallop about the D.C. United post, sources told SBI on Wednesday. Sources in Houston also confirmed that D.C. sought and received permission to speak to Dynamo assistant coach John Spencer, only to have Spencer pass on the opportunity.

San Jose general manager John Doyle confirmed that the Earthquakes had turned down D.C. United's request to speak to Yallop, citing the club's happiness with its head coach.

"We value Frank as a head coach and as an expansion team while things haven't started out smoothly, we certainly don't put that all on Frank," Doyle said of Yallop. "Frank is a great coach in the league and we're happy with him."

Yallop has some brief experience with D.C. United, having been an assistant with D.C. United under former head coach Thomas Rongen in 2000. He just completed his second season as head coach of the San Jose Earthquakes.

Spencer is one of the most highly-regarded assistant coaches in the league, and a logical candidate, but sources tell SBI that part of the reason he chose to stay in Houston was due to a settled family situation. Sources have also suggested that Spencer is a serious candidate for the head coaching job with the expansion Portland team, which is expected to hire a coach by this summer.

Where that leaves D.C. now is anybody's guess, but it certainly paints the picture of a club scrambling for a coach after seeing its top choice turn down the job. Former Kansas City head coach Curt Onalfo had been believed to be the most likely choice to be hired if Porter didn't become D.C. head coach, but the club's attempts to lure Yallop and Spencer look like signs of a club that is unhappy with its present options.

What do you think of these developments? Surprised to see D.C. take a shot at Yallop? Think Spencer would have been a good fit in D.C.? Starting to think it is inevitable that Ben Olsen will be the team's next head coach?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. The club “is unhappy with it’s current options”? Ouch, that’s hurts, man. They must not want exciting, attacking soccer in DC.


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