Dallas, Texas - FC Dallas President and General Manger Greg Elliott announced today that the club has signed Colin Clarke to a new contract for the 2005 season. Per club policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
"Colin has done an excellent job of restoring professionalism and credibility to this soccer team," said Elliott. "While we did not achieve all that we set out to do last year, I am confident that Colin is the man to lead FC Dallas into becoming a perennial MLS Cup contending club."
After serving as the Interim Head Coach for the final six matches of the 2003 season, Clarke was named Head Coach on December 4, 2003. In his first full season as the team's head coach, he led Dallas to the biggest improvement in the MLS from 2003 to 2004. Following a 6-19-5 finish in 2003, Clarke's squad posted a 10-14-6 mark during his first season. He also helped Dallas improve defensively as they yielded 19 less goals in 2004 compared to 2003 (45 GA in 2004 and 64 GA in 2003), the biggest positive improvement in the MLS.
"I am thrilled to be back for another year in Dallas," said Clarke. "I was obviously disappointed we did not make the playoffs, but felt we had a lot of positives come out of last year. I am looking forward to building upon the foundation we established last season and am excited to help this organization move into a new era with a new stadium."
Clarke, 42, served as Assistant Coach for the Dallas Burn from 2001-2003. Prior to joining Dallas, he spent the previous year as the head coach for the San Diego Flash of the A-League, guiding the team to a 16-9-3 record and a second place finish. From 1998-99, Clarke guided the Richmond Kickers of the A-League to a 38-18 regular season record and playoff appearances both years.
A veteran of 38 appearances with the Northern Ireland National Team, Clarke scored 13 goals including a goal against Spain in the 1986 World Cup in Mexico. The Newry, Northern Ireland native played in the English Leagues from 1981-93 with six different teams including Portsmouth, Southampton and Queens Park Rangers. During his 12-year career, he played in 361 English League matches and tallied 146 goals.