The New York Red Bulls announced Friday that they will not be renewing the contract of head coach Hans Backe, nor that of assistant coach Jan Halvor Halvorsen. The news came less than 24 hours after the Red Bulls were knocked out of the 2012 MLS Cup playoffs by archrival D.C. United.
The 60-year-old Swedish manager turned the Red Bulls from the worst team in MLS in 2009 into the top seed in the Eastern Conference in 2010. New York made the playoffs in all three seasons under Backe, but failed to win a trophy despite an array of high-priced talent.
“We want to thank Hans for his work over the past three years and wish him the best of luck in the future,” said Global Sporting Director of Red Bull Soccer Gerard Houllier in a statement on the Red Bulls website.
The Red Bulls also announced two more personnel changes on Friday afternoon.
Current coach and former Red Bulls player Mike Petke will take over as head coach on an interim basis, while former Scotland manager and UEFA technical director Andy Roxburgh will be the new Sporting Director, taking over from Erik Soler, who was relieved of his duties in October.
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