LA Galaxy keen to recruit big-name new coach

November 6, 2007
By Soccernet

Los Angeles Galaxy are once again setting their standards high after the Major League Soccer side announced they are eager to recruit a world-class coach to replace Frank Yallop.

On the day that the club confirmed the departure of Yallop to the San Jose Earthquakes, team president and general manager Alexi Lalas said the club would apply the same thinking that led to the signing of David Beckham as they begin their search for a replacement.

With the likes of Jurgen Klinsmann, Jose Mourinho and former USA coach Bruce Arena - who resigned as New York coach earlier on Monday - currently available, Lalas admitted they are looking for a high-profile coach to lead the team for next season.

'All of the people that you mention are quality coaches and just like teams all over the world we would love to have them,' he said in a conference call on Monday evening.

'We are going to use this as an opportunity once again to push the envelope and once again do something that has not been seen in Major League Soccer.

'I think you would all agree that you have seen that in the past year on the field, now we want to do it off the field.'

Lalas said that the club would consider all and any coaches for the role, but indicated the club would like to find a big name that fitted its criteria.

'There certainly is interest in a high-profile, sexy type of candidate - not simply because this is the Galaxy and this is Los Angeles, but because we are looking to bring in somebody who can do something different with the Galaxy from the results we have come to know.'

Resources will also not be an issue, according to Lalas.

'We are very fortunate at the Galaxy to be given incredible resources to be able to do these historic and exciting things,' Lalas said.

'But there is a method to any perceived madness in what we do and there is sound business in anything we do in terms of revenues and driving the brand and creating more relevancy for the Galaxy around the world. If there is an opportunity to do something, the resources will not the driving force as to why it doesn't get done.'

Yallop has accepted a deal - believed to be a three-year contract - to coach the San Jose Earthquakes who will join the league next season.

Yallop won two titles during three seasons in charge at the previous incarnation of the Earthquakes - the team that later moved to Houston.

In exchange for agreeing to release Yallop, the Galaxy received a third-round 2008 SuperDraft pick from the Earthquakes.

Yallop's departure comes after a tough season in which the Galaxy failed to make the play-offs for a second consecutive year.

The team this season played under an extraordinary spotlight surrounding the mid-season signing of Beckham and the pressure of a backloaded schedule combined with a crippling injury list - which included Beckham - were cited as the reasons for the poor results.

That spotlight is something any new coach will need to be capable of handling.

'We need to find a coach with many of the same characteristics we look for in our players,' said Lalas.

'We need the right person for the time and the environment that exists at the Galaxy. It's a very unique and challenging environment. We need someone who doesn't just survive but who rises to the occasion and the opportunity.'