It was believed that part of the reason the Vancouver Whitecaps made the decision to fire Carl Robinson with five matches to go in the 2018 MLS season, instead of waiting until the end, was because there was interest from other teams in their first-choice replacement Marc dos Santos. Having to go with their third or fourth choice last time in Carl Robinson, the Front Office was not going to make the same mistake twice. With Robbo’s firing, many assumed that the hiring of dos Santos would be made as soon as the LAFC, his employer at the time, was eliminated from the playoffs. Today, the Vancouver Whitecaps made it official and appointed Marc dos Santos as the club’s head coach, with a three-year contract through 2021.
The Montreal, Quebec native dos Santos brings over a decade’s worth of coaching experience at the professional and amateur levels, including successful stops in Portugal, Canada, Brazil, and the United States. As a head coach at the professional level, Dos Santos has made four championship final appearances, winning the 2009 USL First Division and the 2017 NASL Soccer Bowl.
As our own CWilkins wrote in Reasons to be Excited for 2019, “Every team he’s managed save one, regardless of the level of dysfunction when he arrived, has been playing in a final within two years of him being hired”. The selection of dos Santos is not without its detractors. In the very same article by CWilkins, there was a heated debate if a more ‘experienced’ manager should have been the first choice. In addition, there is understandable pessimism that a new manager will not change things in Whitecaps land as the real problem sits higher up the food chain. Without a change at the top, the club will forever be in turmoil.
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