It’s another win for Bob the Builder.
MLS announced on Wednesday that Los Angeles Football Club head coach Bob Bradley has been voted 2019 Sigi Schmid Head Coach of the Year in a landslide, after leading the club to a record-breaking season.
Bradley guided LAFC to their first silverware, the 2019 Supporters’ Shield, where they broke league records for points in a season and goal differential, and tied the record for goals in a season. Meanwhile, the team’s playing style was the most attractive in the league: fast, attacking-heavy while pressing as a unit in defense.
All in all, it was a seriously impressive season, and no surprise that Bradley was voted Coach of the Year, as he won the majority of the vote among players and media and a plurality among clubs. His weighted total was 48.06%, well ahead of New York City FC’s Dome Torrent, who finished in second with 15,89%.
The award is Bradley’s third MLS Coach of the Year honor, and all with different teams — 1998 (Chicago Fire) and 2006 (Chivas USA) were his previous wins in the category. It all burnishes arguably the best pro coaching career among American men to date, as Bradley has won silverware with two MLS clubs, won Coach of the Year with three MLS clubs, managed the United States and Egypt, and been a pioneer in Europe among Americans, coaching in Norway (Stabaek), France (Le Havre) and Wales (Swansea City).
Bradley has done so well this season that a narrative has started going around claiming LAFC have such a good roster that good coaching is not necessary. That’s flat-out wrong. LAFC did a good job building a roster, it’s true, but anyone who’s followed the team closely knows the team has seriously lacked depth in key areas throughout its two years, and more importantly, every player who has been around the last two years and gotten real minutes on the field has substantially improved this season. Bear in mind LAFC basically had just two new starters this season, too, so they didn’t buy a bunch of new players. The improvement is testament to Bradley’s work to improve the squad.
For now, Bradley will aim to make it a double in 2019 with LAFC, as they chase their first MLS Cup. Congrats to Bob for a job well done, and thank you for building the team so well so quickly.
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