NEW YORK – Chivas USA are looking to hire their new head coach before the holiday season, according to the club’s vice president of soccer operations, Stephen Hamilton.
“We’ve had a number of interviews and we have a few more candidates to meet with and speak with,” Hamilton told MLSsoccer.com on Thursday. “We’d like to get this done in the next couple of weeks. “Coming up next are the MLS Combine and SuperDraft in January. We’d like to have someone in place prior to those events to finalize preseason plans and finalize the international players to bring in to strengthen the squad.”
Hamilton confirms the club has spoken to more than the five candidates that have been named in reports. Earlier this week, Soccer America listed five names involved in the process: Eric Wynalda, Steve Sampson, Denis Hamlett, Jesse Marsch and Robin Fraser.
In addition to the names with whom MLS fans are already familiar, Hamilton indicated he was surprised by the degree of international interest the club has received in the vacant post.
“We’re looking at coaches intimately familiar with MLS and a lot of candidates that are very good coaches and have great experience in building successful teams in other leagues,” Hamilton said. “We want someone capable of coming in and doing the job but also stabilizing the position. Fortunately there are a lot of strong candidates.”
Chivas USA say they have gotten a head start on scouting ahead of naming a manager with assistant coach Carlos Llamosa assuming most of the scouting duties. The 2002 World Cup veteran has already made a few trips to South America since the end of the regular season campaign.
“We’ve scouted a number of players that we’ve identified,” Hamilton said. “We’ve submitted, like every MLS team, our Discovery list on Monday. We’ll see which of those players become available and what prices to get deals done. But we feel good about players we’ve identified.”