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Report: Guillermo Barros Schelotto in running for LAFC coach job

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Will the beloved Argentine return to MLS via Los Angeles?

US Citta di Palermo v Udinese Calcio - Serie A Photo by Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images

Los Angeles Football Club have not announced a head coaching hire yet, but SI.com’s Grant Wahl reported an intriguing new name on Wednesday: Guillermo Barros Schelotto.

The Argentine, of course, played in MLS for the Columbus Crew 2007-10, winning MLS MVP and MLS Cup MVP awards in 2008, to go with MLS Cup and Supporters’ Shield triumphs that year. The attacker was arguably the most exciting player around the league in his stint in Columbus, and remains a beloved figure by fans in Ohio.

Of course, since ending his playing career Barros Schelotto has moved quickly up the coaching ranks in Argentina, leading Lanus from 2012-15 (an eternity in Argentine league terms, and with whom he won the Copa Sudamericana in 2013) and now for powerhouse side Boca Juniors, one of the most pressure-packed jobs in all of soccer.

Between his two club gigs in Argentina, Barros Schelotto was hired to manage Italian side Palermo, famous for replacing managers on an almost monthly basis. GBS did not have the requisite coaching badges to manage in Serie A, however, and his appointment was never fully official. In some respects, he dodged a bullet, but he also was on the radar of a European first-division side.

Wahl’s report cites unnamed sources who say Barros Schelotto is a “top candidate” alongside Bob Bradley, who has been in discussions with LAFC since last year.

It would be an intriguing appointment for a few reasons. Barros Schelotto is well liked from his time in MLS, and he does have firsthand experience of the league and some of the obstacles that come from playing in MLS, including the travel and varied venues and surfaces. He’s young, at 43, but has valuable coaching experience already and so wouldn’t be coming into this as a complete newbie, and he appears to be a respected figure, not merely a warm body to stand on the sideline, in the Argentine Primera.

One would figure if Barros Schelotto was to be appointed LAFC head coach, he would have an inside track on good South American players who can play in MLS, a vein being richly tapped at the moment by a number of good teams in the league.

Of course, this is currently just a report at the moment, albeit from a reputable writer, so we’ll see if the rumor mill kicks into hyperdrive in the days and weeks to come, or if he’s one target among several. Either way, we’ll keep you posted as we go along.

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