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2019-20 News Thread

jeffbear

Mod Squad
Staff member
The USWNT has a new coach, as new GM Katie Markgraf announced the hiring of Seattle Reign boss Vladko Andonovski. He's "only" 43 years old, but has been an NWSL lifer as a coach, guiding FC Kansas City for 3 seasons before their demise when he moved on to Seattle to replace Laura Harvey at Reign FC. Vladko has a background as both a player and coach in men's professional indoor soccer and is a native of Macedonia. He's also fairly beloved by his former players as well as the soccer media for his candor and good humor. He's a decent tactician, but is more of a pragmatist than he is a dreamer. He's a "figure it out" kinda guy and seems a really good fit for the job at hand ... which, for the record, is to win the Olympics and then settle in a new roster for a run at another World Cup.

He's already named his first roster, with friendlies against Costa Rica and Sweden coming up quick. And he went straight to the well for some high level NWSL performers who hadn't figured for Jill Ellis ... keeper Aubrey Bledsoe, defenders Imani Dorsey (also a midfielder) and Alana Cook and forward Margaret Purce are all uncapped and we haven't seen Casey Short or Lynn Williams much with the national team of late. Some of the vets are unavailable for this camp due to injury or other concerns ... for example, Alex Morgan announced she's pregnant which will likely take her out of the picture until after the Olympics.
 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
Bayern Munich have sacked manager Niko Kovac after losing at Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday. He had been there since last July, a total of 65 matches. He won a double last year, winning the league by 2 points and the DFB Pokal. But they were eliminated in the Champions League round of 16 and are 5-2-3 for 18 points, tied for 4th in the Bundesliga this season.
 

jeffbear

Mod Squad
Staff member
I guess they decided it was a good time for a shift, since they've already pretty much locked up getting out of their group in Champions League. They have been just completely lukewarm all season in the domestic league though, and Bayern's brand won't tolerate mediocrity for long.
 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
CBS and Univision will share the US TV rights for the Champions League starting in 2021 and running through the 2024 final. The price is believed to be $150 million per year, a big increase over the $100 million that Turner and Univision are laying under the current contract. Games are expected to be broadcast on the network, CBSSN and CBS All Access, their OTT platform. This is their first foray into soccer. The usual suspects all bid on the package with ESPN bidding on both the English and Spanish language rights.

 

jeffbear

Mod Squad
Staff member
Disney/ESPN just doesn't have the budget for that kind of rights commitment right now. Once the Fox deal is starting to get paid down and they're printing money with Disney+, maybe they get back into the game on International rights, but the revenues don't pay for the platform and they're already over-committed on college sports and NBA rights fees. That's one reason ESPN is supposedly taking another run at the NHL. It's cheap and has a proven demographic ... even if it's not a particularly desirable demographic.
 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
Zlatan Ibrahimovic and the LA Galaxy have agreed to part ways. He just turned 38 but I imagine someone is going to throw a pile of money at him in the January window.
 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
Thierry Henry is back in MLS, named coach of the Montreal Impact. He assisted Roberto Martinez with the Belgian National Team for 2 years before leaving to coach Monaco for a disastrous 20 match run, from October 2018-January 2019, compiling a 4-5-11 record and leaving the club 19th in the table. They ultimately finished 17, avoiding the relegation playoff by 2 points.
 

jeffbear

Mod Squad
Staff member
Dumb hire by the Impact. They admitted that they only interviewed Henry and this is very much a PR/hype sort of play given that he has never shown for a single second that he's capable of actually managing a club on his own. I'm sure they are going to leverage the "name" to try and re-set their designated player setup and then hope Henry doesn't screw it up.
 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
And he reached out to them, not the other way around. This has disaster written all over it, in 2 languages.
 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
Reign FC in the NWSL have entered into negotiations to sell the club to OL Groupe, the parent company of Olympique Lyonnais. OL have won the last 4 Champions League titles and have 6 total. A few members of the US National team have played for OL including Megan Rapinoe, Morgan Brian and and Alex Morgan.
 

jeffbear

Mod Squad
Staff member
Reign FC in the NWSL have entered into negotiations to sell the club to OL Groupe, the parent company of Olympique Lyonnais. OL have won the last 4 Champions League titles and have 6 total. A few members of the US National team have played for OL including Megan Rapinoe, Morgan Brian and and Alex Morgan.
So long as they plan to operate Reign as a competitive entity unto itself and not to treat it like a glorified farm club then this would be good for NWSL. Deep, deep pockets over at OL Groupe ... to the point where at 20% stake cost a Chinese investment company something like 100 million Euro.
 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
So long as they plan to operate Reign as a competitive entity unto itself and not to treat it like a glorified farm club then this would be good for NWSL. Deep, deep pockets over at OL Groupe ... to the point where at 20% stake cost a Chinese investment company something like 100 million Euro.
Yeah, the last thing the league needs is the female version of NYCFC.
 

andyt

Canes Moderator
Staff member
Artrhur Blank, owner of Atlanta United and the Atlanta Falcons has purchased an under 10% share in Aberdeen FC in the Sottish Premier League for about $2.5 million. Atlanta United President Darren Eales will have a seat on Aberdeen’s board. They had announced a new ownership structure on Sunday. New chairman Dave Cormack is an Atlanta resident.

Aberdeen last won the league in 1984-85, Alex Ferguson’s next to last season. They are the last club not named Celtic or Rangers to win the league.
 
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jeffbear

Mod Squad
Staff member
American owners have had a patchy history in the Scottish Premiere League, but I've long said that the second tier in Scotland is a place where a savvy ownership group can make a big splash for a LOT less cash investment than you'd need to do the same thing in England. Aberdeen, Hibs, Hearts ... those clubs have the kind of supporter bases and infrastructure that you could do some really impressive stuff if you handle things intelligently. You're never going to win Champions League or anything, but you can build something meaningful just the same.
 
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