Marco Schällibaum's first press conference as the Montreal Impact head coach is in the books.
And the buzz around the Montreal Impact was felt at the press conference, on twitter and all around the club.
Marco Schällibaum first words uttered at the press conference were very significant and straight forward
One of my principles is when you get something, you must give back. I will give it my all to have success with this team.
Changes in the Coaching and Academy Structure
The first notable and big changes in the organisation are the appointments of 2 new assistant coaches making the structure as follows
Head Coach : Marco Schällibaum
Assistant Coach : Mauro Biello
Assistant Coach : Philippe Eullaffroy
Assistant Coach : Youssef Dahha
Fitness coach : Paolo Pacione
Mauro Biello continues on as assistant coach with the club and Philippe Eulaffroy completes the coaching triangle. Yousseff Dahha gets bumped up from the Academy and becomes the pro team's goalkeeper change. This is not Dahha's first time as goalkeeper coach of the Montreal Impact pro team in the mid-2000's in the USL.
Philippe Eulaffroy's appointment will have a definitive impact on the Academy. The Academy Director and U21 Head Coach will keep his director title but will not be the U21 Head Coach anymore.
The Academy changes are:
- Wilfried Nancy from U18 to U21 head coach
- Jason DiTullio goes from U16 to U18 head coach
- Simon Gatti becomes the U16 bench boss
- Former U21 assistant Nicolas Gagnon becomes the head coach of the U14s.
- Antoine Guldner remains with the U13s.
- Yannick Girard named assistant coach to Wilfried Nancy with the U21's.
- Owen Braun is now the Goalkeeper Coach with the Academy, adding to his responsibilities as Sports-Etudes Goalkeeper coach
The Schällibaum Effect
Confirmed by the media present right after the press conference, Marco Schällibaum has a 1-year contract with an option. It might be quite surprising for some as his profile shows a technical expertise that might be helpful for long-term . Though, since his BSC Young Boys days (1999-2003), Schällibaum has not held a coaching position for more than 1 year, also an indication of the known volatility of Swiss clubs and their respective owners.
"I like attacking play, going for the win," Schällibaum said in his introductory press conference at Stade Saputo on Tuesday. "Technically, it's easier to move around with the ball than without the ball."
Fitting that attacking style, ball possession style that Sporting Director Nick De Santis has always promoted, Schällibaum is saying the right things. And he actually means it as Patrice Bernier said on French sports network RDS that Felipe Martins confirmed to him that new head coach likes to attack.
Being more offensive does not mean more forwards and less defenders but we can see a shift towards more offensive fullbacks , something lack in the previous season.
"Our criteria were quite simple," De Santis added. "Philosophy, methodology, working method, preparation, vision. The very first time we met, he showed that he was a passionate, energetic and determined person. The soccer discussions sometimes lasted until the wee hours of the morning, and we saw things in a similar way.
Having clicked so quickly early in the process, we just hope that time and patience will be given to Marco Schällibaum. Keeping the ``European`` identity of the Montreal Impact, integrating the Academy into the pro and surrounding the new coach with Impact people, there will be no excuses for bad communication or divergent philosophies.