The Canadian Soccer Association is certainly taking the "patience is a virtue" line of thinking in their quest to find a new men's national team head coach, and they're prepared to enter 2013 without a permanent replacement for Stephen Hart at the helm.
The team has been without a coach since Hart resigned days after Canada’s 2014 World Cup qualifying run met an embarrassing end with an 8-1 loss in Honduras on Oct. 16.
Canada’s next competitive fixtures aren’t until the Gold Cup next July and CSA general secretary Peter Montopoli admitted that the new coach will be in charge by then and will have had a camp in advance of the competition to gauge what talent they have at their disposal. But anything other than that is still up in the air.
“I have not spoken with any candidate at this moment in time,” Montopoli told MLSsoccer.com in an interview on Thursday. Montopoli said that both he and president Victor Montagliani (above) have a list of potential candidates but wasn’t able to divulge how long that list was or who may be on it.
“We’re still early stages and the first formalized process will occur at the first board meeting in December.”
The only person to formally declare his candidacy for the job is former Canadian international forward Paul Peschisolido, whose only coaching experience has been with English League Two side Burton Albion.
Another name that has been suggested in the media is former Montreal Impact head coach Jesse Marsch, who parted ways with Montreal earlier this month. Marsch’s only coaching experience at the international level was as an assistant with Bob Bradley with the United States in 2010-11. While it’s still early days in the search, Montopoli says nobody can be discounted at this stage.
“I don’t think we would exclude anyone at this point in time," he said. "We’re not in a position to be exclusionary. We just want to be sure that it’s the right fit to continue what [Hart] started to continue moving the program forward."
Montopoli was adamant though that coaching experience in CONCACAF would be a definite advantage to any candidate and given the current situation with the squad where a number of veterans are likely to call time on their international careers, someone who has a plan to bring young talent from the youth teams to the senior level will get strong consideration.
“There are coaches that have been very successful and coaches that haven’t been successful as you might have expected coming into CONCACAF,” he said.
While the search goes on, the program will still continue as Montopoli saying a friendly for early next year is in the works.