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Official: Oscar Pareja is the next Colorado Rapids manager

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)
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)
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It took a few days of speculation, but it appears that the signing is indeed official and former FC Dallas and US Men's National Team coach Oscar Pareja has signed the contract making him the sixth manager in the history of the Colorado Rapids franchise.

Quotes from the Rapids official press release:

"I am honored to join such a great organization like the Colorado Rapids, and want to thank everyone at Kroenke Sports & Entertainment for the opportunity." said Pareja. "This is a dream come true, and I am excited to get started at the Player Combine this weekend and the SuperDraft next week. We already have a great team and everyone is optimistic about what we can achieve this season and beyond. I also want to express my most sincere thanks and gratitude to Clark and Dan Hunt and everyone at the FC Dallas organization, who have all played a huge part in my career and life since 1998."

"We’re thrilled to welcome Oscar to the club," said Rapids President Tim Hinchey. "He was an exciting, attacking player who has also earned a lot of respect as a coach. His accomplishments at both the youth and professional levels show that he can be successful in the short term while building for the future. This is an exciting moment for the future of the Rapids."

This is an absolutely brilliant signing in my opinion. An 18 year career through South America and North America plus a ton of coaching experience with youth makes him an ideal man for this position. It's a position that is short on depth and youth potential at the moment, and I certainly trust the man who built the strongest youth set-up in the country to provide for us in that regard.

The official press conference to announce him as head coach will be at 3 PM Mountain Time.