NYCFC appoint Patrick Vieira as Head Coach



New York City FC have announced the hiring of Patrick Vieira as their new head coach.

Vieira has been linked to the NYCFC job in separate reports by Sports Illustrated’s Grant Wahl and by Empire of Soccer. The club said Vieira has signed a three-year contract to lead the club and will begin his duties on January 1st.

“I am delighted to take up the role of Head Coach of New York City FC. To work with this squad, with Claudio Reyna and Rob Vartughian and the fantastic support team that is in place, is an exciting prospect for any coach,” Vieira said. “This established football set up, together with a passionate and loyal fan base, located in a special city which I know well, makes for an unparalleled opportunity that I am delighted to seize with both hands.  I cannot wait to get started.”

Vieira had been in charge of Manchester City’s Elite Development Squad since 2013 where he worked with NYCFC players Angelino and Shay Facey. He guided the Manchester City U21s to back-to-back appearances in the UEFA Youth League quarterfinals and earned his Pro License this past summer, immediately capturing the interest of several clubs in England and continental Europe. Despite the numerous opportunities available to him, he chose to extend his relationship with City Football Group and take the NYCFC job.

The open position of head coach at New York City FC has prompted significant interest and I have no doubt that in Patrick, we have one of the most impressive young coaches I have encountered,” NYCFC president Tom Glick said. “Patrick’s ability, vision and the respect in which he is held by everyone who works with him, speaks volumes for his character and capacity to succeed. I am excited to work with him and I know the energy he will bring to the role will have a hugely positive impact across the Club.”

The club said Vieira will travel to New York tomorrow to meet the first team as well as sporting director Claudio Reyna and goalkeeping coach Rob Vartughian. Vieira has been involved with NYCFC since its launch working with Reyna and former head coach Jason Kreis on developing the club’s philosophy. He has also traveled to the U.S. on several occasions to watch the team and endorsed NYCFC’s efforts in signing Andrea Pirlo.

“Patrick was a legendary player and has all the characteristics required to make a fantastic Head Coach. His exemplary drive, passion and dedication have always marked him out as a rare talent and all of those qualities, alongside his understanding of the game, make him a natural choice,” Reyna said.

“Patrick is a natural born leader. He has played under some of the best managers in the world and experienced different leagues and playing styles, enjoying success everywhere he has been. We believe he can bring that knowledge and experience to take New York City FC forward in MLS. We are looking forward to him joining us in the coming weeks.”

The club said it will announce further additions to the coaching staff at a later date. However, they did reveal two holdovers from the previous regime; assistant Rob Vartughian and physical trainer Oscar Pitillas.

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  • MTF

    Worst kept secret.

  • Yawn

    Viera must have done something pretty fucked up to deserve this kind of punishment

  • The insider

    Complete anarchy at NYCFC.

    They really think that Kreis was the problem.

    Their fans have no idea.

  • Anonymous

    I know this will only reinforce all of the cries of “farm team”, but I personally don’t care about being a farm team as long as it means doing well in the league. I’m not under any illusion that MLS, like the South American leagues, is not ultimately a farm for top flight leagues to scout talent from. NYCFC’s arrangement is just much more visible, blatant, and organized, which may or may not be a bad thing depending on one’s perspective. It’s probably bad for the long-term growth of the league, but in the present, I think there are definitely some benefits to being so directly aligned with a top team in a top-tier league and as far as they make good use of those benefits, I can accept that for now.

    The problem is that I’m not entirely sure that this is the right way to do better in the league. On the one hand, I’m excited about the notion of the front office and the coaching staff not butting heads and hampering each other–a unified direction/vision is always a positive. On the other hand, I’m pretty concerned that nobody at the organization has much experience dealing with some of the unique quirks of MLS… As a fan, I can already anticipate this being a bumpy ride moving forward until CFG start to understand that soccer here in the USA is not like Europe.

    • Anonymous

      I suppose my other concern would be if someone as green as Vieira will be able to assert any sort of authority at all on DP’s of the status that we have. Somehow I can’t see the likes of Villa, Pirlo, and Lampard taking anything from Vieira seriously…

      • slowleftarm

        Why not? Sure, he’s an inexperienced manager but he was actually better than any of them as a player. I would imagine that gets him some respect.

        • Anonymous

          I suppose my concern is because I think that there’s a difference in the way you respect someone as a peer and the way you would respect someone as a coach or leader. I respect my co-workers a ton, but if one of them suddenly became my supervisor, it would be harder to take him seriously because I had seen the other side of him when he was in the trenches with us.

          Then again, I’m not sure what kind of relationships (if any) these guys all have with each other, so it could very well be totally different. Hopefully, it is. The last thing we need is for people to be fighting each other. One ship, one direction… even if that direction is into the abyss. x/

    • HydraHamster

      I strongly agree. That’s what makes this interesting. In MLS, coaches have less freedom to form and shape a team completely to their liking. A coach may grow a great team in MLS standards (eventually), but the league rules and guidelines keep them from growing further than that.

  • Anonymous

    Ruud Gullit, part 2.

    No way he understands how this strange league works

    • Anonymous

      On the bright side, being a much less experienced coach, he’s more of a blank slate than some of the other coaches that have tried to cross over and ended up failing. Without having an entire career of irrelevant experience and habits, maybe he’ll be able to adapt better than some of the other names that were rumored.

    • James the Thief

      and a strange league it is with even stranger fans

      • Anonymous

        It’s called: Grasping for whatever tenuous strands of hope you can find.

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