Dwayne De Rosario and Greg Vanney have considerable history in MLS.
First, they were on opposite sides of the California Clasico, De Rosario’s San Jose Earthquakes squaring off against Vanney’s LA Galaxy when both were players, and sometimes literally, as this photo indicates.
Eventually, the duo ended up on the same team, with Vanney taking over as Toronto FC head coach in 2014, while De Rosario was wrapping up his playing career.
LAG Confidential caught up with De Rosario last month, the man busy as ever between raising his family in Toronto, running an academy, a foundation, launching a line of DeRo 14 Headphones with a portion of the proceeds earmarked for his foundation, and publishing a memoir — DeRo: My Life — that will be released this spring.
The four-time MLS Cup champion and honoree this offseason as one of MLS’s The 25 Greatest players in the league’s first 25 years said he still keeps up with MLS since he’s hung up his boots.
When asked about his former coach now turning up at the Galaxy, De Rosario endorsed Vanney at his new job.
“He’s very thorough, obviously he’s gained a lot more experience as a coach with his stint with TFC, bringing us a lot of great moments here, so we’re very grateful for that,” he said. “I think his role with LA is going to be a seamless transition for him. I think he’s going to do well. I think he knows the league, he knows what it takes and I think it’s going to be a great addition to their organization.”
De Rosario, who had two stints with TFC and remains a club ambassador, did sound upbeat about the new coach taking over in Vanney’s place in Toronto.
“Right now on our end, we just got Chris Armas to coach again, [he’s] another guy who’s an experienced coach in the league, so hopefully he will continue off where Greg Vanney finished and get us back to another Cup victory over here.”
De Rosario entered MLS 20 years ago, and he noted the growth the league has seen in that time, something he’s pleased to see.
“It’s amazing to see new teams coming in the league and the league continuously growing,” he said. “It’s great to see soccer-specific stadiums continue to evolve in cities across the U.S. and North America. And I think it’s all healthy and it’s a plus to see academies and these infrastructures being implemented, along with professional organizations and teams. I have been paying close attention and it’s been good so far.”
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