Harkes is out as FC Cincinnati coach

Posted at 8:49 PM, Feb 17, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-18 05:15:44-05

CINCINNATI -- It’s official: John Harkes, who led FC Cincinnati through its record-breaking inaugural season, has split with the team and been replaced as its head coach.

According to a news release issued Friday night, former Vancouver Whitecaps 2 manager Alan Koch will take up the reins of Cincinnati’s young soccer team. Team president and general manager Jeff Berding said in this release that the sudden switch was made "after careful consideration of what is in the best interest of the FC Cincinnati organization."

The team added that the change "gives us a technical staff that is in alignment with our vision for the franchise."

FC Cincinnati named Harkes as head coach in 2015. He coached the team through its first season, which didn't net a championship but did draw record-breaking crowds for their league. Berding said at the time that Harkes was someone "who would bring instant credibility to our efforts."

Harkes is a winner of two MLS cup titles, the first American to play in the English Premier League and a two-time World Cup participant.

"We wish John all the best and thank him for his efforts in our inaugural year,” the statement said. "We believe we have an exciting team and look forward to a special season with our fans at Nippert Stadium."

Check back for updates on this developing story.