In an interview with the New Zealand Herald this off-season, Toronto FC head coach Ryan Nelsen said TFC “won’t give me much more time.”
Now, after recent roster moves, the pressure is squarely back on the New Zealander’s shoulders.
After guiding TFC to a 6-17-11 season in 2013, Nelsen will be expected to win with his new crop of players.
And while last year’s record was far from Nelsen’s fault, he knows his job is on the line.
“Of course it is,” Nelsen said. “From when I first came in last year, to where this team is now, that’s what I wanted. That was the year-long goal. That’s why we did what we did this previous season.”
In 2013, the Reds were essentially off-loading talent to make room for Monday’s signings.
“Are we the finished product? Of course not,” Nelsen said. “We’ve got to define a culture in the team. We’ve go to get a winning culture. We’ve got so many things to do. We understand that. Everyone understands that.”
One of Nelsen’s newest midfield gems, Michael Bradley, said he’s convinced the club’s current gaffer is capable of moving TFC forward, despite last year’s bumpy ride.
“Even when you look back at Ryan’s career as a player, he was a leader, he was a competitor, he was somebody who even on the field, other guys looked to him,” Bradley said. “When now you talk about the transition into being a coach, I think he’s done a great job with that and I think there’s no doubt who now is the person that’s going to be bringing us forward.”