When Bruce Arena was hired as head coach and sporting director of the New England Revolution, one of the biggest question marks was how it'd impact the status of interim head coach Mike Lapper.
An answer arose Wednesday, as the club announced that Lapper was left the club and Jarryd Phillips joined Arena’s staff as director of sports performance after nearly three years at Minnesota United. Phillips has also worked with the Seattle Sounders.
“Adding Jarryd’s expertise in sports science and performance is a critical step toward growing the technical staff and evolving the soccer operations arm of the organization,” Arena said in a statement. “His detail-oriented focus and data-driven approach were great assets to his previous clubs in Minnesota and Seattle, and I look forward to seeing him implement his program here in New England.
“I would also like to extend my gratitude to Mike Lapper for his contributions to the club,” Arena added. “Mike's leadership, tact, and class during a transition period for the club were remarkable. We wish him nothing but the best moving forward.”
In taking over from Brad Friedel on May 9, Lapper went 1-0-2, highlighted by a 3-0 win over the San Jose Earthquakes. That served up San Jose’s only defeat in their last eight games and helped the Revs steady the ship during their transition.
In draws against D.C. United and the Montreal Impact, Lapper simplified the Revs’ game plan and put out a defense-first system. One of his top experiments was putting rookie DeJuan Jones at left back when drawing Montreal, 0-0.
Lapper, before joining the Revs in 2017 as part of Friedel’s staff, enjoyed 15 seasons with the Columbus Crew as an assistant coach (2005-13) and a defender (1997-2002).