By Matt McCarthy, 985TheSportsHub.com
Incoming Revolution head coach Bruce Arena ran his first practice session Tuesday in Foxboro, but he is still not committed to coaching the team this weekend against the LA Galaxy.
Arena said that he has not yet decided if he will take to the sidelines Sunday night when the Revs visit the Galaxy, citing concerns that his presence might be a “distraction.”
Bruce Arena said he still hasn't decided whether he'll make his debut on the sidelines this weekend in LA, where he coached for eight years: "If I think I'm going to be a distraction to the team, I won't do it." #NERevs— Jeff Lemieux (@jeff_lemieux) May 28, 2019
If Arena does not coach on Sunday, interim head coach Mike Lapper would likely be on the sidelines for the Revs. But Lapper’s future with the franchise also appears to be up in the air.
Arena was full of praise for the job that Mike Lapper has done on an interim basis, but said he couldn't speak to whether he'll have a permanent role on his staff. "Mike will speak for Mike. I don't want to do that. He's done a very good job here." #NERevs— Jeff Lemieux (@jeff_lemieux) May 28, 2019
The Revolution hired Arena on May 14 as head coach and sporting director after firing head coach Brad Friedel and general manager Mike Burns. He said that week he would take over coaching the team sometime in June.
The 67-year-old Arena is a decorated MLS coach, compiling a 240-92-147 record in stints with D.C. United, the New York Red Bulls, and the LA Galaxy. He has won five MLS Cups, three with Los Angeles (2011, 2012, and 2014) and the first two league championships with D.C. United in 1996 and 1997.
He had two stints in charge of the U.S. Men’s National Team, with both ending in disappointment and disaster.
Arena first coached the United States from 1998-2006, a tenure that saw a strong World Cup performance in 2002 when the U.S. reached the quarterfinals, but ended with a poor showing in 2006 when the U.S. failed to get out of the group stage, despite ending the tournament as the fifth-ranked team in the world.
Arena was brought back in 2016 to replace Jurgen Klinsmann and was tasked with turning around a then-floundering World Cup qualifying effort, but saw the program go up in flames when the United States failed to qualify for the 2018 tournament in Russia.
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