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Ciman, The General, Returns...

35 year-old former Impact defender of the year lands assistant coaching role at CF Montreal

America v Montreal Impact - CONCACAF Champions League
The General Returns..... as assistant coach...
Photo by Miguel Tovar/LatinContent via Getty Images

CF Montréal announced Tuesday the nomination of former Belgium international Laurent Ciman as assistant coach to replace the departing Patrice Bernier.

Sporting Director, Olivier Renard said: “We are very happy that Laurent is joining the coaching staff and that he is back with the Club.

“It is a logical and beneficial association, especially knowing the attachment Laurent has always had for this club and this city. We can now count on his experience after a fruitful career in Europe, in MLS, and on the international stage.”

Given the role involves working closely with the first-team manager, the assumption is that Thierry Henry has chosen the Belgian, possibly in consultation with Olivier Renard. Henry was an assistant-coach with the Belgian national team over the last two years of Ciman’s international career.

“I’m very happy to be back home,” said Ciman. “It’s been my wish for a long time, and this is a great opportunity for myself and my family. I just want to contribute to the club’s growth.”

The Belgian played three seasons in Montreal, the second and third not quite living up to the undoubted impact he made after arriving in 2015, before being traded to Los Angeles FC in 2017.

After leaving California, Ciman resumed his career briefly with Dijon in France, where a 2-year contract was ripped up after only 4 months and 9 appearances, before heading back to Canada and Toronto FC.

Ciman, now 35, played six seasons in MLS for a total of 136 regular season games, including 126 starts, tallying five goals and four assists.

From 2004 to 2015, he played in Belgium’s top division for Royal Charleroi Sporting Club, Club Brugge, KV Kortrijk and Standard de Liège, making a total of 286 appearances in a playing career spanning 515 professional matches, including 20 caps for his country.

Check out the latest The Ball Is Round Podcast. Recorded earlier this evening, 24 Feb, we cover the Henry Stays/Bernier Goes/Ciman Returns situation and other Montreal soccer news... as well as the Canadian WNT at the She Believes Cup.

Every Week - The Ball Is Round...
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