MLS “Awards” – Hottest Coaching Seat

With one of the more exciting MLS seasons now in the books, it is time to look ahead to the awards seasons. Typically speaking, soccer awards are difficult to figure out as the sport is not really statistically driven. Value for the different players and managers are valued in different ways for different people.

So for the first time ever, Viva La Futbol has asked eight experts, from the traditional and nontraditional soccer media, to weigh in on the normal MLS awards, as well as some we made up for our polls.

For our experts we have assembled a panel of respected soccer journalists, analysts, bloggers, and podcasters. Our panel is listed here.



If we are going to give a coach credit for success, shouldn’t we also give them blame for failure? These guys better hope that the players get the brunt of the blame for their shortcomings this season. Otherwise it might just be time to start brushing off the old resumes for this group. (-ed note: the majority of these predictions were made before New England fired Steve Nicol, so a good percentage of our panelists look especially smart today).

How the Panel Voted:

Frank Klopas

Chris Ballard
Around The League Extra
Steve Nicol

Abram Chamberlain
Viva La Futbol
Hans Backe

Jason Davis
Best Soccer Show
Gary Smith

Daniel Feuerstein
Major League Soccer Talk
Steve Nicol

Robert Jonas
Center Line Soccer
Alexi Lalas
ESPN Soccer
Steve Nicol

Jeremiah Oshan
SB Nation Editor
Hans Backe

Zac Wassink
Yahoo Sports

What the Panel Said:

Chris Ballard:
Even though they got to Open Cup final it’s been disappointing in Chicago. [Frank] Klopas is technically only interim coach anyway, which gives the Fire a pretext to get somebody else in.

Abram Chamberlain: In the real world it would be Steve Nicol, but Nicol plays for Robert Kraft. Kraft is known for not knowing he owns a soccer team, so while it should be Nicol it probably will be someone else. (-ed note: Guess I was wrong.)

Jason Davis:
I guess I can’t pick Nicol anymore…Hans Backe

Robert Jonas:
In the race for the veteran-MLS-coach-that-may-finally-have-overstayed-his-welcome award, [Steve] Nicol narrowly edges out San Jose Earthquakes gaffer Frank Yallop as the coach to lead his team to a most underwhelming season.

Alexi Lalas:
[It all] depends on playoffs results.

Jeremiah Oshan: Steve Nicol only because Tom Soehn is already gone

Zac Wassink:
I’m still saying Hans Backe regardless of the recent “vote ofconfidence.” Really believe Red Bulls have to win at least aplayoff game for Backe to be safe.

Coming Up….

Hottest Coaching Seat | Coach of the Year | Newcomer of the Year | Allocated Player of the Year | Defensive Player of the Year | Goalkeeper of the Year | Rookie of the Year | Biggest Sophomore Slump | Breakout Player | Designated Player of the Year | Least Valuable Player | Most Valuable Player | Team to Watch Next Year | Team Most Likely to Win MLS Cup


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