Nagamura-Houston

Houston Dynamo FC have parted ways with head coach Paulo Nagamura, the club announced Monday.

Houston, currently last in the Western Conference standings (14th place), will be led by Dynamo 2 head coach Kenny Bundy on an interim basis for the remainder of the 2022 MLS season.

Goalkeeper coach Zack Thornton will remain on staff, while assistant coaches Chris Martinez and Jimmy Nielsen have departed as well.

“This is a difficult decision because Paulo is a top individual who has earned the respect of the players and staff for his tireless work ethic and commitment to the club. We wish Paulo and his staff well moving forward in their careers,” general manager Pat Onstad said in a release.

“Moving forward, we are excited about this opportunity for Kenny. He is a talented up-and-coming coach who worked his way up through our coaching system and he will lead the team for the remainder of the season.”

Nagamura joined Houston ahead of the 2022 campaign after leading Sporting Kansas City’s second team.

The 39-year-old Brazil native finished with an 8W-16L-5D record in MLS play.

The Dynamo, in their first full season under Onstad and owner Ted Segal, are on track to miss the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs for a fifth-straight year. Since 2014, the two-time MLS Cup champions have qualified once for the postseason.

Before Nagamura joined, Houston were led by Tab Ramos for two seasons. Wilmer Cabrera had the longest managerial tenure before that duo.

This year, Houston have brought in two Designated Players in Mexican international midfielder Hector Herrera and Paraguayan international striker Sebastian Ferreira. During the offseason, in the buildup to 2023, they’re expected to be busy with roster changes.

Nagamura is the fifth midseason coaching departure of the 2022 MLS campaign after the following exits:

  • D.C. United with Hernan Losada, replaced by Wayne Rooney
  • San Jose Earthquakes with Matias Almeyda, replaced by Luchi Gonzalez for 2023
  • Charlotte FC with Miguel Angel Ramirez, Christian Lattanzio on an interim basis
  • Ronny Deila going from NYCFC to Belgian club Standard Liege, Nick Cushing on an interim basis