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Report: Bradley declines offer from IFK Goteborg

BobBradleyStabaek2 (Stabaek)

By DAN KARELL

Bob Bradley’s successful first season in Norway has earned him looks across the rest of Scandinavia.

According to reports in Sweden and Norway, Bradley was considered for the head coaching position at Swedish side IFK Göteborg, only to decline an offer after Göteborg’s refusal to also hire one of Bradley’s assistants.

“We had discussions about the job,” Bradley reportedly told Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet. “I felt strongly enough to take with me Tomasz Kaczmarek (assistant and fitness coach in Stabaek) into the (Göteborg) coaching staff but it was explained to me that it was not possible.”

A second-place finish in the Swedish Allsvenskan for Göteborg in 2014 wasn’t enough for manager Mikael Stahre to keep his job. After not being allowed to bring Kaczmarek to Sweden with him, Bradley said that he wasn’t interested in the Göteborg position. “The door is closed,” he said.

Bradley exceeded expectations with the small club Stabaek in his first season coaching in Europe, finishing the Tippeligaen in ninth place out of 16 teams. Bradley also led Stabaek to the semifinals of the Norwegian Cup.

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What do you think of this report? Do you see Bradley moving on after one season with Stabaek? What do you think of him rejecting the Göteborg job?

Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. I read in the Balkans media that Bradley is one of the possible candidates for the job of coaching the Bosnian national team, who recently fired Susic (previous coach). The Bosnian NT is struggling in their qualification group for the European championship with only two points after four matches played. But there are still chanses of reaching the Euro.

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    • +1. And I’d add that any comment that begins with “I read in the Balkans media….” is pretty much awesome as far as I’m concerned. That is some hardcore USMNT geeking. Bravo, sir.

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  2. Huge BB supporter but I find it comical people are praising his loyalty while blatantly disregarding he almost left a club after one year.

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    • What does “loyalty” have to do with it?

      You pay, he performs.

      He does not perform you throw him out on the street. He performs he gets a raise or a better offer elsewhere.

      Bob Bradley is a professional, not some amateur on a good will tour of Scandanavia promoting American soccer values. He went to Norway to increase his chances of getting a better gig.

      Stabaek knew that going in . If they want to keep him then they need to increase their resources and pay him more and bring in more and better players. If they can’t do that then he is wasting his time with a team that will probably get relegated next year.They paid him, he brought them a 9th place finish with a team that looked like it was going to get relegated.

      Stabaek got what they paid for and assuming the contract situation and his employers allow him to see what is out there, then he should see what is out there.

      BB owes them nothing.

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  3. Can’t help but to feel happy for/proud of Coach Bradley. I was ready for a new man in charge of the USMNT, but will always have respect for him as a coach and person.

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  4. Good for Bradley. Was glad when he left the NT post, but never wanted him to not succeed elsewhere. I hope he continues to succeed in Europe and eventually lands a big job. He should sign Agudelo, Shea, and Gooch since those three (Gooch has a temp deal with Charlton) are really struggling right now and because it’s always good to have past, present, and future national team players playing each week

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    • Stabæk fans had to pool their own money together to sign Michael Stephens. They sure as hell can’t afford Agudelo, Shea, or Gooch.

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  5. If he can improve on the 9th place finish from this season, the contract offers next offseason will be from even larger clubs who will offer him more input and control (like hiring his own fitness coach).

    Bob Bradley is a smart man.

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  6. Should hold out for a move to a bigger team/league anyway. Just speculating, but maybe one of the big teams in Denmark or Belgium or something of that nature could be a nice next step up.

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  7. I like that Bradley is a loyal general to his officers. He should have a say on his staff. That’s how it should be. Success can often hinge on the familiarity and comfort with his “people”. If Goteborg were not willing to meet that simple request – so be it – it’s their loss. I think a move to Goteborg definitely would have been a step up in terms of club stature and expectations but Bradley, if he keeps progressing, will have other opportunities.

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  8. Don’t know if they under achieved or not but I’d be skeptical of a team who fired their coach after a 2nd place finish…1st place or bust can be tough expectations on a coach, especially an American coach in Europe.

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    • I agree with what you said, but it is worth pointing out that just because it says, “A second-place finish in the Swedish Allsvenskan for Göteborg in 2014 wasn’t enough for manager Mikael Stahre to keep his job” doesn’t mean that there isn’t more to the story for why the manager was let go.

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      • I agree, that’s why I added in that I don’t know if they underachieved or not. I guess I should’ve said I don’t know the full story, to be more clear. Definitely could be more to why the manager was let go.

    • what’s wrong with high expectations? I guess he can always come back to MLS where he’ll always be a god Like Bradley, Jones and Dempsey.

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      • High expectations are great….if they are realistic and have some common sense behind them. If not, they can have a negative effect, making teams predictable (always choosing the safer option), paranoid and scared to make a mistake.

    • Someone mentioned something about context earlier.

      BB did not take the Staebek job so that he could work on his cross country skiing. It was part of a plan to eventually propel him to a bigger Euro club. He did well there and looks good now,but who knows if that is a repeatable thing.

      They don’t have a lot of resources and next season they could get relegated regardless of who is in charge. And how good would he look then? Which would be a big setback to BB’s ambitions.

      Something about the situation at Goteborg made BB decide he probably would not succeed there. None of us will probably ever know all the dirty details but Bob is an adult and doesn’t need anyone to tell him that how to make a decision.

      An MLS job would be just more of been there did that, even if they gave him TFC to manage. So that makes little sense.

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  9. So Goteborg’s coach takes them to 2nd, and he gets fired. Then they want to hire a coach that finished 9 of 16 in Norway’s league? What am I missing here….

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    • What you seem to be missing is context. If Burnley were to finish ninth in the EPL, you better believe their coach would be getting some calls. If Chelsea were to finish second multiple times, Jose may not be renewed.

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      • By that logic if Bradley only get’s them to second place he’ll be fired. He’s better staying where he is, improve on their standing next season and the next then jump.

      • First off, I’m not saying what Bradley should or shouldn’t do. I’m pointing out the error in the statement above, which is a bit staggering.

        That being said, I think it’d be interesting for Bradley to take a job like this. He’s done really well with teams that have fairly low expectations, and I’d like to see how he does in a setting where winning a championship is expected.

      • Not if they won’t even let him bring in some of his own coaches. That’s a bad sign. The last thing he wants to do is to be put in a situation where he doesn’t have full backing of the board and can’t manage how he wants to.

    • I think it’s more that Bradley and his mentality and tactics helped a small club with lower expectations to finish mid-table. Combine that with his MLS and USMNT pedigree, and the guy is someone that we should expect to draw interest from at least half-decent clubs around the world. Happy for Bob.

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      • And also a guy with enough chops to expect to get to name his assistants. You hire a young manager, sure, you give him your guys on the bench. You don’t do that to a guy who has twenty plus year of bench time and made the knockout rounds of the World Cup. That’s just insulting.

      • In their first meaningful game out without Bob Bradley Egypt lost. And, if memory serves, it was at home. Egypt is already doing worse than when Bradley was their coach/manager.

  10. It’s too bad Bradley and Goteborg couldn’t work it out. Goteborg is actually a pretty big club in Sweden. The city itself is considered the sporting capital of Sweden and Ullevi stadium has hosted a number of National team games (though Goteborg also plays in a smaller stadium down the street). Champions League would have been a real possibility at Goteborg…

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    • It seems a bit mercenary that Bradley was ready to leave Norway aftre only one season. Like a player, Bradley needs to settle someplace and find his feet more. Going to a team who fired their coach because they were in second place is not where he needs to be.

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      • He may not have been ready to leave, he may have just been considering it and listening to what they had to say. He could have easily said something along the lines of, ” before I could consider coming, I’d have to bring some of my own coaches with me.” That wouldn’t be surprising at all. Suppose someone called you up and pitched you a job and you asked, “well what’s the salary range?” It could be similar to that. I think he’s happy at Stabaek, but if the right opportunity came along, he would have to consider it.

      • “t seems a bit mercenary that Bradley was ready to leave Norway aftre only one season.”

        Who are you to tell BB what he needs?

        Mercenary? I ‘m sure Wenger and Rodgers are returning their salaries to Arsenal and Liverpool because their teams are not performing up to expectations.

        They call it professional sports for a reason.

        Staebaek would not have hesitated to fire BB had he not met expectations.

        If BB was contractually free to look around then he should look.

    • Goteborg might be a bigger club in Sweden than Stabaek is in Norway, but Norweigan clubs seem to make the CL group stage from time to time, with much more regularity than Swedish clubs (Malmo’s presence this year notwithstanding). The Norweigan league seems to perform better in Europe as well.

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