As was widely expected, Vancouver Whitecaps annouced existing manager Teitur Thordarson as the man to lead the Caps into their new Major League Soccer era next year.
Teitur has only been with the Caps since December 2007, but in that time he has won the respect and friendship of the Southside and other Whitecaps fans, steering us to two Championship finals in his two seasons in charge and looking pretty likely to guide us to a third this year as well.
Although I personally have had some concerns about the rigidity and choice of his team and formation selections at times over his spell in charge, especially when behind in games, you can’t argue with the end results and for me, Teitur has more than earned his chance to show what he has at the top table of North American football.
He has set us out as a defensive powerhouse. We may not score too many, but we don’t concede too many either. I’d much rather win a bunch of boring 1-0 games and deliver a Championship than lose a bunch of 4-3 encounters and win fuck all. You can talk about the “beautiful game” and flair in football all you want, all that matters is results as far as I’m concerned. I’ve spent too long watching lower league Scottish football to care about anything else.
He has been criticised at times for a lack of excitement with his teams, but you can only piss with the cock you have and some of the players have let him down when it comes to banging in the goals this season. He can only put them on the pitch, he can’t put the ball in the net for them or supply the service.
With the mad influx of recent signings, he now has what is surely a core of his MLS squad and he has the huge benefit of being able to work with these players in hopefully two months worth of meaningful, competitive games. By the end of that time he’ll know who he wants to take, who he wants to ditch and what holes he needs to plug.
Unlike any other MLS expansion team, the 2011 Whitecaps will be going into their first season with a manager who really knows the bulk of his squad. That can only give us one hell of a competitive advantage and allow us to hit the ground running.
Sure he may not know all of the complexities of what is frankly some farcical MLS regulations but he has others around him who will be able to help him in that regards and I’m pretty sure we’re going to see the addition of at least one person with MLS experience to the backroom team in the next few months.
He know how to perform at the highest level though. He took Estonia up the FIFA rankings and has delivered one, hopefully two, Championships in Vancouver already.
It may not be a name that’s going to sell a wheen of new season tickets, but like all the talk around the designated player(s), I couldn’t give a toss if it’s a household name or not, just as long as the job gets done on the pitch.
In many regards, not being a huge name to the casual football fan will actually take some of the pressure off Teitur to deliver. Can you imagine if the Caps had appointed someone like Bob Bradley or Martin O’Neill? We’d all be talking about the MLS Championship in year one.
Teitur deserves his shot. He’s a good friend to the Southside and we’ll be backing him loud and proud for 2011 and beyond.
Well done Teitur. We’re standing right there with you.