It’s not just fans who will be eagerly monitoring whom the Colorado Rapids hire as their next head coach. Players will see who the club chooses before choosing whether or not to return themselves.
Midfielder Martín Rivero, the team’s assists leader in 2012, will wait to see who the Rapids select as their next coach before deciding whether to return for a third season at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, a league source told MLSsoccer.com on Wednesday night.
The Argentine’s two-year loan expired at the end of last season, and his preference is to stay in Colorado, the source said.
But before committing his future to the Rapids, the 24-year-old attacking midfielder wants to see who the club hires as the eighth head coach in franchise history. Rivero is expected to make a decision before the club opens training camp on January 24, according to the source.
The Argentine's preference, according to the source, is former Rapids captain Pablo Mastroeni who, like Rivero, was born in Argentina. Multiple reports have linked Mastroeni to the position, which opened up earlier this month when Oscar Pareja left to take FC Dallas’ head coaching position.
Other reported candidates include former Rapids Robin Fraser (current a New York Red Bulls assistant) and John Spencer (who most recently coached the Portand Timbers from August 2010 to July 2012).
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Rivero also holds offers from clubs in Argentina and Chile, according to the source, although his preference is to remain in MLS. He starred in Colorado in 2012, posting a team-best eight assists in 30 starts, but an injury-riddled 2013 limited him to only 16 appearances last year. The Rapids have repeatedly expressed an interest in re-signing Rivero, but at the right price.
The Rapids declined official comment on this report.
Chris Bianchi covers the Colorado Rapids for MLSsoccer.com.