Carmelo Anthony Names Coach, Technical Director for Puerto Rico FC



Puerto Rico Football Club revealed the two men who will be leading the expansion franchise when it enters the NASL in the 2016 Fall Season.

Club owner Carmelo Anthony has tapped Adrian Whitbread as head coach and Neil Sillet as the technical director of his venture.

The pair of Englishman are opposite sides of the spectrum when it comes to their Caribbean pedigrees. Whitbread’s lengthy resume includes many stops in England, but his most successful stint as a manger was likely with the now defunct Puerto Rico Islanders from 2008-2011. He first started as an assistant with the organization, as well as the Puero Rican national squad, before being named the head coach for the Islanders’ first season in the modern NASL. During his time in Puerto Rico, Whitbread helped lead the club to the semi finals of the 2008-2009 CONCACAF Champions League and the USSF D2 Championhip in 2010.

Whitbread was most recently serving as the head coach of the Bahrain Olympic squad.

“I am so honored that Carmelo, and his PRFC franchise, is giving me the opportunity to become his new head coach and am very excited to get started in putting together a team that will be successful and one that the Puerto Rican supporters can be proud of,” said Whitbread. “I know firsthand how passionate the fans can be and will do everything I can for Carmelo and the fans to have a team that they can be proud of. We can all play a part on and off the field to build something very special and believe it’s a unique situation to be involved in. I know a lot of work has gone on already, but when I knew of this opportunity, myself and Neil have been working on this 24/7 as we both have the same passion and drive.”

While Whitbread will bring a valuable well of Caribbean experiences to the new club, this will be Sillett’s first foray into the region. His career as a player, coach and physiotherapist has included stints at Portsmouth FC, Derby County and Coventry City.

“Puerto Rico Football Club is the most exciting project I have been involved with in my entire career,” said Sillett. “Having been on a technical team that has won an FA Cup and been involved in playoffs in the UK that underlines exactly how I feel about it. Having discussed U.S. soccer with people like Craig Burley, my father, Colin Clarke, Paulo Wanchope, and in particular Sir Alex Ferguson, who convinced me it was the right move, I am sure it is where the major growth lies in soccer. Carmelo and his team have shown great commitment and enterprise in getting PRFC to this position.”

Sillet and Whitbread have a tall task ahead of them, with little under a year to completely build Puerto Rico’s roster from scratch.

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  • REAL OpenCupFans know nasl teams are bad

    does Carmelo know that nasl teams lose to MLS reserve league teams and that the nasl is run by criminals?

    • Anonymous

      Then he’d fit right in as an owner.

    • Jukebox Pony


      The NASL teams did not face any MLS reserve teams in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup. It was against independent clubs within the USL and two of the NASL clubs (Atlanta and Cosmos) lost against MLS teams. Also, only one person in Traffic Sports was found quality and the NASL parted ways with him and Traffic Sports.

      • Jukebox Pony

        I mean, guilty.

    • Hernando Peralta

      I agreed 100%, The Nasl is a criminal Enterprise…. run by ISIS people.

  • storms

    two guys that (I assume) can’t speak spanish. bueno.

  • slowleftarm

    I thought he was just a partial investor – didn’t realize he’d be making front office decisions. Interesting. Hope he knows something about soccer!

    • Alan Smithee

      Or at least is smart enough to hire people who do.

  • REAL OpenCupFans know nasl teams are bad

    the point is that nasl teams lost 7 straight times to teams in the same league which teams are on par with MLS reserve sides. The nasl is a low level soccer wise and truly a minor league and criminal traffic sports was running and backing them. If I was Melo I would get out quick, before the cosmos fold.

  • I Remember Debusschere Like It Was Yesterday

    As a Knicks fan, I really hope Carmelo devotes himself full time to this new project. Hopefully he can take Dolan with him

    • Anonymous

      First marching in Baltimore now this. He’s really branching out. Hopefully he can, you know, win a few playoff series in his full time job. That would be nice.

      • storms

        how dare people have interests outside of their job. just shoot the ball negro

        • Hernando Peralta

          Hola Storms,,, That was real bad, No seas racista, asi no ganas nada… Solo enemigos…

  • Pingback: Englishmen Bring Experience To Puerto Rico | SporTech BI()

  • REAL OpenCupFans know nasl teams are bad

    wow buddy, don’t make this stuff racial.

    think the point is that Melo is not doing so well at his day job and maybe should concentrate more on that. If his team was doing great then negative comments would not come his way.

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