Just weeks before their March 19 MLS season opener, the New York Red Bulls dismissed longstanding assistants Richie Williams and Des McAleenan—then released possibly the tersest press release in sports history to announce the decisions.
Here it is, in full:
Red Bull New York announced today that it has relieved assistant coach Richie Williams and goalkeeping coach Des McAleenan of their duties effective immediately.
“As an organization, we decided to go a different direction with our coaching staff,” said Red Bull New York General Manager and Sporting Director Erik Soler. “We want to thank Richie and Des for their contributions to our franchise and wish them good luck in their future endeavors.”
Obviously, there is much more to this story than that ‘don’t let the door hit you on the way out’ bulletin, but we’ll have to await further details. According to the Washington Post’s Steven Goff, who broke the story, “One source said the reason was repeated violation of club rules. Another cited punctuality.”
Williams had been with the organization since 2006 and was seen as a vital liaison to coach Hans Backe and his staff as they acclimated to the idiosyncrasies of doing business in MLS during their first season last year.
McAleenan had been New York’s keepers coach since 2002 (when they were the MetroStars) and is widely respected around the league.
More to follow on this one, for sure.