New Galaxy trainer Greg Vanney ready to get to work – Daily News
Greg Vanney knows how to manage a reconstruction project.
He did so with Toronto FC, where he coached for six seasons, taking over a franchise that had failed to advance to the MLS Cup playoffs for eight seasons.
Now, at 46, he’s back with the Galaxy, this time as a coach, but with a lot of work still to be done. Much like the early days of his playing career, which began with the Galaxy in 1996.
“Back when I was first in the Galaxy, we were training in the parking lot outside the Rose Bowl, where the grass is,” Vanney said Wednesday. “There was glass and we were walking around as a team, picking up the glass and putting it in the trash, there were manhole covers on the ground and somehow we managed to qualify for three championships playing under circumstances like this.
“It’s about the mindset and the work you do and being purposeful every day and how you go about things and don’t look for problems but find solutions and are willing to go the extra mile, in any circumstance, whether it’s playing or training trying to improve myself and having that mindset is what it means to me to be a part of the Galaxy.
After spending his first six professional years (1996-2001) with the Galaxy, Vanney returned in 2008, his final year as a player.
On Tuesday, he was officially announced as the new trainer for the Galaxy, a franchise that needs a reboot.
Vanney replaces Guillermo Barros Schelotto, who was fired in October, just before ending two years of a three-year contract.
“There are a lot of quality people who can coach, certainly in our country and around the world, who were interested in this work,” said Galaxy President Chris Klein. “Part of what we were looking for was someone who could come and lead our team on the pitch, who had a culture and a genuine love for this club. Greg certainly has that.
Vanney takes over a Galaxy team that finished in 10th place in the Western Conference last season, missing the playoffs for the third time in the past four years.
Getting the team back to the top of the rankings will be a challenge.
The Galaxy is still waiting for Cristian Pavon. Pavon has spent the last two seasons with the Galaxy on loan from Boca Juniors in Argentina. The loan agreement expired on December 31. Boca Juniors has asked for a price of $ 20 million for the Galaxy to buy Pavon, but the Galaxy has so far opposed that price.
“We have formally declined the option price, which is just a formality as our interest remains alive,” said Galaxy CEO Dennis te Kloese. “We have been in contact for the last month, a month and a half, formally with Boca (Juniors), these conversations have been very friendly and open, but we have not found any agreement.”
The Galaxy have taken their time building the roster, as several teams in the league have already undergone transformations.
Now, as he settles down, Vanney will begin work on his latest project.
“Our heritage means nothing to our future if we don’t show up and work every day and try to build on it,” he said. “We can’t just talk about the five championships we’ve won. It’s about what we’re doing today to prepare for the weekend game to try and get a result.
“It takes humility, forethought, planning, leadership and buy-in. We’re looking for players who want to be here for the right reasons. We will always respect the legacy of this club and I think it is our responsibility to try to build on that. This legacy exists for these players and this club and now what can we do as a working group to add to that and it starts with day one. ”