As you well know, D.C. United just fired coach Curt Onalfu after just seven months on the job. The franchise is having an abysmal year, and frankly, an abysmal last few years. As Steve Davis so eloquently puts it today, they're also kind of living in the past, still riding out their accomplishments from a decade ago, when MLS was a much different place.
So clearly, the problems start at the top. However, there's still a permanent coach that needs to be hired, one that can potentially make the guys up higher look better. Who could that mystery coach be?
Well, why not Bob Bradley?
The U.S. Men's National Team coach isn't perfect, but he would bring a jolt of legitimacy to a program that desperately needs it. Sure, the prospect of coaching abroad has to be alluring for Bradley, but if you're in his shoes, why not follow in the footsteps of Bruce Arena, the former U.S. Men's National Team coach that has turned the Los Angeles Galaxy around?
As Davis writes:
D.C. United's best chance now is to do what the L.A. Galaxy did two years ago: go out and hire a coach who has the juice to remind the suits that he is in charge of the team. Period. It took an enormous personality like Bruce Arena to finally tame the circus at the Home Depot Center.
The guy D.C. United clearly needs is Bob Bradley. He's earned the respect and knows Major League Soccer. That provides him with the gravitas to go into RFK and take charge, to inform Payne and Kasper what he needs and then expect them to go get it while remaining salary cap compliant. They must seek a figure who can assume control in a more sustainable and sensible chain of command.
Davis throws out a couple lesser names that may be more realistic, but if you're D.C. United, don't you have to go for the home run hire to regain your place in MLS' hierarchy? Otherwise, what chance do they have?