oscar pareja courtesy of mlssoccer.com
Oscar Pareja will take over the Rapids after spending most of his MLS career as a FC Dallas player and coach.
The Colorado Rapids officially introduced Oscar Pareja as their new head coach on Thursday. Pareja had most recently been the head of FC Dallas' academy as well as an assistant coach. He also played for FC Dallas from 1998-2005.
"We’re thrilled to welcome Oscar to the club," Rapids president Tim Hinchey said in a press release. "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."
Pareja replaces Gary Smith, who led the Rapids to their first ever MLS Cup in 2010. But Smith never seemed to quite buy into MLS and was often at odds with team leadership.
Pareja will inherit a team that looked dangerous at times last year, but also struggled down the stretch. The team has not yet suffered any significant losses, though, and should have Conor Casey fully back.