FOXBOROOUGH, Mass. – Less than 72 hours after his team finished the season with the fewest wins in team history, longtime manager Steve Nicol and the Revolution parted ways on Monday.
Nicol, who guided the club to a 112-108-81 record in his 10 seasons with the club, led the Revolution to a disappointing 5-16-13 (28 pts.) record in 2011, and tied with Vancouver for the lowest point total this season. In the past two seasons, the Revolution missed the MLS playoffs after reaching them for eight-straight seasons (2002-2009).
Nevertheless, Nicol expressed gratitude for the chance to manage the Revolution and and dwelled upon his experience in Foxboro, where he took the team to unprecedented heights.
“I’m very thankful to the Krafts for giving me the opportunity to be their head coach,” Nicol said in a press release. “I’ve had some great times and been involved with some great players and great people. My family will always remain part of the Kraft family.”
The decision to part ways was not entirely unexpected. After the Revolution sunk to the bottom of the standings, it appeared that Nicol, who’s contract was set to expire in the offseason, was on thin ice.
And on Monday, Nicol, along with owner/investors Robert Kraft and Jonathan Kraft, met to discuss the manager’s future.
“Robert and I met with Stevie today and we had a productive discussion about this past season and the direction the club needs to go in the future,” said Jonathan Kraft in a press release. “We all agreed a change of direction was needed to reverse the trend of the past couple of years. Stevie was a successful head coach and a tremendous ambassador for the Revolution for the past decade and set a high standard for success, leading us to four conference titles in six years. We thank him for all of his contributions.”
Nicol leaves New England’s bench as its most decorated in manager in team history. Over the course of his ten seasons in New England, he led the Revolution to four MLS Cup appearances (2002, 2005, 2006, and 2007) and secured a U.S. Open Cup (2007) and SuperLiga Championships (2009). His 301 games as manager is second all-time among MLS managers, and his 112 wins is fourth among all managers in MLS history.
The team is expected to conduct a search for a new manager shortly. Meanwhile, the team will conduct post-season training this week. It is unclear who will oversee the team while the managerial search is conducted, though it is possible that assistant manager Steve Myles will be the man in charge for the interim.