On Wednesday, Toronto FC unveiled Bob Bradley as their new head coach and general manager. That’s when it all clicked for me.
I think it’s pretty obvious that Bradley’s departure as LAFC head coach days earlier was likely a truly mutual decision, I don’t think it was a scenario where LAFC said they were done with him and made it sound mutual to save face, and I think both sides probably figured things had run its course after a truly poor 2021 season for the black-and-gold.
But when I say it clicked, it’s because Bradley isn’t just going to be reunited with his family in Toronto (obviously his son Michael is TFC captain, but his brother Jeff is also the club’s communications manager) but because he’s getting to be GM on top of head coach.
Given John Thorrington’s position looks totally safe as LAFC GM for the time being, there was no way Thorrington was going to step aside voluntarily for Bradley to expand his duties here. And Bradley thinks he’s in a tier of MLS coaches, alongside Bruce Arena and Peter Vermes, to be both coach and GM. Given his track record, I understand the desire.
But LAFC just are not at a moment where they’re going to give full control to one person. Maybe down the line it’ll happen. But for the time being, the coach comes to coach.
TFC, meanwhile, had an even worse season than LAFC and they’re willing to throw the keys to one person to try and get the rebuild on track. And yes, all that family connections for the Bradleys.
So there you have it. I think it’s fair to say Bradley’s tenure with LAFC did seem to run its course, and he seemed to want greater powers and responsibilities. He had to go elsewhere for that, and obviously the next question is who is going to be the next LAFC head coach. Even in spite of the ups and downs with Bradley, it’s going to be a tall order to meet and exceed the first manager.
What do you think? Leave a comment below.