COMMERCE CITY, CO - JANUARY 05: Oscar Pareja is introduced as the new head coach of the Colorado Rapids during a press conference at Dick's Sporting Goods Park on January 5, 2012 in Commerce City, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Since the Colorado Rapids hired long time (very long time!) FC Dallas favorite Oscar Pareja as head coach, I decided to ask Daniel Robertson of our superb FC Dallas blog Big D Soccer for a couple of words on our new gaffer. Thanks to Daniel for providing!
Oscar leaves Frisco as probably the most beloved member of the organization. His passion for the game and the team is absolutely infectious and his affect on the players is clear. Players love Oscar Pareja. He will instantly become a favorite of the fans.
On the field, he is a coach that likes to play a possession oriented game based on making the ball do the work. This past season, the Oscar Pareja led FC Dallas U18s defeated Barcelona…yes that Barcelona…3-1. He built the FCD academy into the top academy in the country as evaluated by US Soccer and has groomed many youngsters into FC Dallas homegrowns that are set to make a big impact on the team this year and in the future.
From an outsider’s view, with a decent familiarity with the Colorado Rapids, I think the most interesting aspect of Oscar Pareja’s early tenure at Colorado will be to see what kind of support he gets from an ownership that has never really looked to South America for players. Oscar will be a success at Colorado if he is given the time to groom the team the way he wants them to play and is given the resources to bring in the players he wants. His connections in Colombia and South America are top notch and I hope the ownership gives him the opportunity to break the mold of building the Rapids through trades and the draft. We will all be watching very closely in Dallas and rooting for Oscar except for three games this season.