Paul Mariner On His Way?
The drill when you decide to take a new job is usually to first let your current employer know that you want to leave before taking the new gig. If you have been a good boy or girl you can usually leave with a handshake and maybe even a job reference. Unless the current job sucks the other sensible rule is to not quit your current job without having something new lined up.
And if the rumours are to be believed It sounds like Former New England Revolution Assistant Coach Paul Mariner is on his way to Toronto. Earlier today he informed his current employer (struggling English side Plymouth Argyle) that he wanted to leave with immediate effect. Here is the statement on their web site:
Paul Mariner has today asked the club if he can be released from his contract of employment as he has another opportunity that he wishes to pursue. Given the outstanding relationship that Paul has with this football club, we have therefore agreed to release him from his contract and wish him all the very best for the future.
Mariner, for those that do not know much about him, was a forward/striker of some renown in England in the Seventies and Eighties. He played for the English National Team and along with Plymouth he had successful stints at Ipswich, Portsmouth and my beloved Arsenal. He moved into coaching in 2003 at Harvard University and was subsequently scooped to assist Stevie Nicol at New England Revolution, which he ably did from 2004 until 2009 when he returned home to take his just relinquished post at Plymouth.
Mariner has been linked with the TFC job for some time and it would now be less than a surprise to see a press conference either tomorrow or early next week announcing him as the Red’s new Head Coach.
Where this all becomes interesting is what it means for the future of Earl Cochrane. Canadian Soccer News reported yesterday(http://tinyurl.com/2chtrcc) that the apparent front runner to take the job up to this week was indeed the man who currently is doing the job on an interim basis. But the developing De Rosario “situation” with Glasgow Celtic along with another “consideration” has put the brakes on announcing Cochrane as the permanent GM.
Could that other “consideration” be Mariner himself? If he is hired as the new Coach of Toronto FC in the coming days could it be that one of the more attractive GM candidates out there (the aforementioned Steve Nicol) would be willing to come to Toronto as well?
Nicol has done everything there is to do in MLS (with the exception of winning the MLS Cup) and done it generally consistently well on a shoestring with a frugal owner unwilling to give him the resources bigger clubs have. New England has taken a dip in form in the past two years and with the likelihood of him getting the resources of a New York, a Seattle, a Los Angeles or yes a Toronto FC, he might be looking for a new challenge in a new city.
I guess, like the DeRo thing we will need to wait and see what happens over the coming days.
But do not be surprised if Paul Mariner is the first of a number of new additions to the staff of Toronto FC over the coming days.