Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up
View All Scores

New Red Bulls GM delivers a vote of confidence that certainly doesn’t sound like one

Vancouver Whitecaps FC v New York Red Bulls

HARRISON, NJ - SEPTEMBER 10: Head coach Hans Backe of the New York Red Bulls looks on from the sideline during the game against Vancouver Whitecaps FC at Red Bull Arena on September 10, 2011 in Harrison, New Jersey. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Getty Images

If this is a “vote of confidence,” then it might well be the worst one in the history of sports.

Here is what new Red Bulls general manager Jerome de Bontin had to say about the club’s head coach, Hans Backe, who suddenly finds the ground beneath his feet in Harrison to be highly unstable ground:

Unequivocally today we are behind Hans and we are going to be with him through the end of the season. As to next season, we don’t know right now.”

That actually made me laugh. Not because I want bad things for Backe. His ways lean toward unconventional at times, but he has put up a reasonable winning percentage at a place where most before him failed miserably to do so. I happen to think the guy knows what he’s doing.

The comment makes me laugh because this organization is cursed, apparently, with the ability to reliably derail any measure of progress in any area.

At a time when Backe and former GM Erik Soler have built a roster capable of competing for an MLS Cup, a statement like that can only undermine the effort.