By RYAN TOLMICH
After leading D.C. United to what might be the greatest resurgence in league history, Ben Olsen has been rewarded for his efforts.
D.C. United announced Monday that the fifth-year head coach had signed a multiyear contract extension. Olsen, who played 12 seasons with D.C. United before taking over as head coach in 2010, currently has his side sitting atop the Eastern Conference standings a season after a record-setting, futile campaign in 2013.
“Close to half my life I’ve been a part of this proud club,” Olsen said. “D.C. United has become my family and my identity. It is where I belong and thankfully, with this extension, it is a place I’m going to be for several more years. My commitment to winning and having a team that our fans and community are proud of will continue to be my priority.”
“Ben has re-established a winning culture at D.C. United, and I’m very pleased that he has reached a multiyear agreement with the club to continue his excellent work,” added general manager Dave Kasper. “He has forged a playing style that is very effective in MLS, and fostered an identity that ‘the team is the star,’ one that our fans in the D.C. metropolitan area are very proud of. I look forward to continuing a strong working relationship with Ben with the goal of adding more silverware to our trophy case.”
Here are some more of Monday’s MLS news and notes:
TORRES AMONG FIVE FOREIGN-BASED PLAYERS CALLED UP BY MEXICO
Less than a month after making his national team debut, Erick “Cubo” Torres is already scheduled for his El Tri return.
Torres is among five foreign-based players set to be called in by Mexico for a pair of October friendlies against Honduras and Panama. Torres will be joined by Guillermo Ochoa, Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez, Javier Aquino and Hector Herrera as El Tri’s non-Liga MX selections.
The Chivas USA forward, who has scored 14 goals this season, played a full 90 minutes in his El Tri debut on Sept. 9 in a friendly with Bolivia. However, Torres has not appeared in MLS action since an Aug. 31 red card against the LA Galaxy.
Torres is expected to return to action Saturday when Chivas USA take on the Seattle Sounders.
TORONTO FC IN NEED OF NEW SPONSOR AS BMO CHOOSES NOT TO RENEW
With the big money acquisitions of Jermain Defoe and Michael Bradley, Toronto FC have done their share of spending in 2014. However, the club will now be forced to find a new sponsorship partner to recoup some of that cash.
The club’s main kit sponsor, BMO, has opted not to renew their jersey sponsorship, which ends after the 2014 season.
The bank will continue to sponsor the club in other ways, but TFC insist that going forward with a sponsor-less jersey is not an option and the club is hoping to secure a new partner before the end of the year.
Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment chief commercial officer Dave Hopkinson admits that the timing of BMO’s decision is bad for the club given recent struggles, but he also insists that things could change with a playoff appearance.
“It’s not the ideal landscape. TFC is frustrating right now, especially given the start we had,” Hopkinson says. “But when (companies) make an investment of that size they want a lot of metrics. We haven’t seen the broadcast audience we’d like. We started off hot, then we cooled off. … It’s not going to go back until we make the playoffs.”
What do you think about Olsen’s new deal? How do you think Torres will perform with Mexico? Will TFC bounce back in time to make the playoffs?
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