Carl Robinson is out of a job even though Vancouver is within in striking distance of a playoff berth. (Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports)
VANCOUVER – Major League Soccer coaches are dropping like flies these days.
Last week the the San Jose Earthquakes gave Mikael Stahre the axe after LA Galaxy sacked Sigi Schmid.
On Tuesday, it was Carl Robinson’s turn.
Vancouver Whitecaps FC announced that the club has fired head coach Carl Robinson, assistant coaches Martyn Pert and Gordon Forrest and goalkeeper coach Stewart Kerr effective immediately.
Whitecaps FC Academy technical director Craig Dalrymple will lead the team as the acting head coach, with the support of club coaches Rich Fagan, Steve Meadley, and Raegyn Hall, for the rest of this seson.
The search for the next head coach will begin immediately.
“We have a lot of respect and appreciation for Carl and his team, and are thankful for the contributions they have made to this club,” Whitecaps FC president Bob Lenarduzzi said in a statement. A lot of thought and consideration has gone into this decision, which was made with the best interests of the club moving forward.”
With five games remaining in its season, Vancouver (11-11-7, 40 points) is in eighth place in the Western Conference only four points out of a playoff berth.
“With five games left, we remain focused on our opportunity to make the playoffs,” Lenarduzzi said. “As we look to 2019 and beyond, we are committed to being a championship contender and a global search for a coach to lead this vision will start today.”
A former Red Bull, Robinson was appointed head coach in December 2013, following two seasons as an assistant coach. During his time at the helm, Robinson recorded an MLS regular season mark of 64-59-42 and 78-71-50 across all competitions. Robinson guided Vancouver to three playoff appearances, including two Western Conference semifinals, the 2015 Canadian Championship and a semifinal appearance in the 2016-17 CONCACAF Champions League.
Whitecaps FC have two crucial road fixtures at LA Galaxy Saturday and at Toronto FC Oct. 6 before hosting Sporting Kansas City at BC Place Oct. 17..
Earlier this season, James O’Connor replaced former New York City FC head coach Jason Kreis on Orlando City.
New York-based teams also have changed coaches, although no one was fired. NYCFC’s Patrick Vieira got an offer from Nice in French Ligue 1 that he could not refuse as Domenec Torrent replaced him in June. Red Bulls boss Jesse Marsch joined sister club RB Leipzig in Germany in June as assistant coach Chris Armas took his place.