With 12 straight playoff appearances and now four trips to MLS Cup in the last five years, it was only a matter of time before the rest of the league realized that hiring Seattle Sounders assistant coaches might be a smart move. That time may now be upon us.
Gonzalo Pineda has apparently emerged as the front-runner to succeed Ben Olsen as the head coach of D.C. United.
Shakeup in the DC United coaching search. Seattle assistant Gonzalo Pineda has emerged as frontrunner, one source tells me. Another indicates Chris Armas contract talks broke down. #MLS #Sounders #DCU— Dylan Butler (@Dylan_Butler) December 9, 2020
This report seems to contradict an earlier one that suggested former S2 head coach Ezra Hendrickson was the front-runner.
Hearing that Columbus Crew assistant Ezra Hendrickson has now emerged as the frontrunner for the #DCUnited head coaching job.— Kristian Dyer (@KristianRDyer) December 8, 2020
From multiple sources, sounds like he could be the hire and things could progress quickly from here. #MLS #MLSCupPlayoffs
Both the former Sounders assistants were considered among the candidates, but had fallen off when it appeared as though United was poised to hire former New York Red Bulls head coach Chris Armas.
While there is no clear coaching hierarchy beneath Sounders head coach Brian Schmetzer, Pineda is the one most often credited with helping devise tactics and has been most often linked with other jobs. The former Mexico international played two seasons with the Sounders before retiring and trying his hand at broadcasting. He was among Schmetzer’s first hires, joining the Sounders coaching staff ahead of the 2017 season. If hired, the 38-year-old would be the youngest head coach in MLS.