Crew give Warzycha new multi-year contract

Coach says it's "rewarding" to have the faith of the club

Robert Warzycha

Photo Credit: 
Jamie Sabau - Getty Images

Not wanting to prolong the issue during the stretch run, the Columbus
Crew announced Thursday that coach Robert Warzycha has been signed to a
multi-year contract to replace the one that expires at the end of this
season.

Per club rules, no financial details of the contract were given.

“I believe Robert’s record speaks for itself and that he has
unquestionably earned the opportunity to continue leading our club,”
Crew president and general manager Mark McCullers said in a statement.

Despite leading the Crew to the final of the 2010 US Open Cup, two
straight CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal appearances, and a
second-straight Supporters’ Shield in 2009 – his first season at the
helm – it wasn’t a given that Warzycha would be given a renewal. The
Crew jettisoned many quality and popular players such as Guillermo
Barros Schelotto, Frankie Hejduk, Gino Padula and Brian Carroll before
the 2011 season, and left many wondering if the club could still
contend.

But bolstered by solid signings and a strong draft, Columbus are
currently in first in the Eastern Conference with an 11-8-7 record and
eight matches left.

“I am not overwhelmed by what we’ve done,” he said last month. “We are
in first place right now, but I know there are a lot of games left and
the playoffs.”

The key, he said, was keeping the core from the 2008 team such as William Hesmer, Eddie Gaven and Robbie Rogers.

“When we sat down last year and decided to refresh the team, put it
that way, we said these are the guys we have to keep,” he said.

Warzycha, a Crew player from 1996-2002 before retiring to join the
coaching staff, has the best regular-season winning percentage in club
history at .578 (45-29-28), including a 7-6-3 stint as interim coach in
2005.

“I’m encouraged by the direction we’re headed and it is rewarding to
know that the organization believes in my coaching philosophy,” he said
in a statement.

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