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“We need to rescue that”: Paulo Nagamura vows identity restoration at Houston Dynamo

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As he evaluated which candidate could best accomplish that objective, Onstad said that main criteria included experience and familiarity with MLS.

While Nagamura is a first-time MLS coach, he’s been around the league for over a decade, starting with his lengthy playing career that included stints with LA Galaxy, Toronto FC, Chivas USA and Sporting Kansas City. After his 2016 retirement, Nagamura spent the last four seasons coaching SKC’s USL Championship affiliate Sporting Kansas City II, where he learned under one of the league’s longest-tenured and most successful coaches in Peter Vermes.

“When we searched around the world for all those coaches, speaking to a lot of high-potential coaches that we were looking for, is that we found the biggest issue we had with a lot of these guys we spoke to was a lack of familiarity with MLS,” Onstad said. “Well, the gentleman beside me has played 12 years in the league. He’s been in a coaching environment for five years, he’s as long in the tooth in MLS as I am. He’s a guy that’s very familiar and I think what’s really important as well is he’s a winner. He’s won two MLS Cups, three U.S. Open Cups, he’s continually been on teams that have been fighting for championships. And that’s the type of person we wanted to hire.”

Nagamura also highlighted the experience he gained with Sporting Kansas City II as invaluable in preparing him to be an MLS head coach.

“I’m very grateful for the SKC organization and Peter Vermes for being my mentor the last five years when I became the coach,” he said. “I learned a lot from him, the way he deals with players, the way he sees the game, the way he manages his daily routine. So I’m grateful, I learned a lot in that organization.

“It’s a long process. It’s a project and if I need to call Peter to ask for advice, I definitely will.”





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Midfielder Celeste Boureille departs Thorns FC

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Celeste Boureille has informed Thorns FC of her impending move to a European-based club, the club confirmed today, with an announcement regarding her next destination expected in the near future

Boureille, 27, was out of contract with the Thorns after the 2021 National Women’s Soccer League season and had announced her departure from the team on Monday via social media.

She joined the Thorns as an undrafted free agent before the 2016 season and went on to make 66 regular-season appearances with the club over her six seasons. She was part of NWSL Shield winning teams in 2016 and 2021 and was member of the Thorns’ NWSL Championship team in 2017.

“My time as a Thorn has been an amazingly rewarding experience and I have loved every second of it,” Boureille said on Twitter. “Thank you to the entire Portland organization for giving me this unforgettable opportunity since day one as a Pro.”





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Charlotte FC eye more DPs beyond “special player” Karol Świderski

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Krneta assured that more additions are on the way, too, particularly of the DP variety (as many as two more). Ecuador international midfielder Jordy Alcívar is currently a Young DP, though that classification could change come roster compliance day.

“We’re looking for more,” Krneta said. “There will be more DPs, we have options and this is why we build the club and the roster in a way that we can cherry-pick, if you like, at the end of the roster-building who we want. … These very good players, it’s not easy to get these players over the line. There’s always an issue or two. But hopefully soon we’ll add one or two more players.”

As key signings are finalized, Świderski is relishing the opportunity – and natural pressure – that awaits him in Charlotte.

“America, this was my dream also,” Świderski said. “I’m so happy to be here.”





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Atlanta United Adds Sixth Preseason Opponent 

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ATLANTA – Atlanta United today announced the club has added a sixth preseason match against Tepatitlán FC to be played Sunday, Feb. 13 while the team is in Mexico. It will be the second match Atlanta plays that day after taking on Chivas Guadalajara. Both matches will be played at Chivas’ Verde Valle training facility and are closed to the public.

The club also announced it will stream each of its remaining preseason matches live on ATLUTD.com/live, including all three matches in Mexico. Atlanta is scheduled to open its 2022 MLS Regular Season on Sunday, Feb. 27 against Sporting Kansas City at Mercedes-Benz Stadium (3 p.m., FS1/FOX Deportes). Tickets for the Home Opener are now available.

After playing Georgia Storm on Jan. 25, the club will continue its preseason with its second match against Georgia Revolution on Jan. 30 (12:00 p.m.) at the Turner Soccer Complex on the campus of the University of Georgia in Athens. The match, presented by Piedmont Healthcare, sold out to Season Ticket Members earlier on Wednesday and the club also announced that a portion of the ticket proceeds will be donated to the Piedmont Healthcare Foundation.

Atlanta will then travel to Guadalajara and train daily at Club Atlas Colomos in Zapopan, Mexico. It’s first match at Colomos will be against Celaya FC and will be open to media. Atlanta will then play two matches Feb. 13, playing Tepatitlán FC after its match against Chivas. Tepatitlán FC is currently in Mexico’s second division and will join Celaya as the second Liga de Expansión MX opponent for Atlanta this preseason. Tepatitlán won the league’ Clausura – winning the Guardianes 2021 by defeating Atlético Morelia in the tournament final. A week later it won the 2020-21 season by defeating Apertura champions Tampico Madero in penalties.

After returning from Mexico, Atlanta will play its final preseason match at Birmingham Legion FC on Feb. 20 at Protective Stadium. Ticket information for the match will be announced in the coming weeks.





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