Former LA Galaxy player crowned MLS Coach of the Year

2012 MLS Cup Champions Los Angeles Galaxy Portraits
2012 MLS Cup Champions Los Angeles Galaxy Portraits / Jeff Gross/GettyImages

Pat Noonan, the former LA Galaxy player turned coach, has been crowned Major League Soccer’s Coach of the Year for his exceptional leadership role with FC Cincinnati. Under his guidance, Cincinnati transformed from a last-place team to securing the best regular-season record in the league.

At 43 years old, Noonan masterminded Cincinnati's remarkable rise, guiding them to a 20-5 record with nine draws, accumulating an impressive 69 points. This incredible turnaround saw Cincinnati emerge as the Eastern Conference champions, positioning them for an upcoming MLS quarter-final playoff match against Philadelphia this Saturday.

Noonan's influence extends beyond coaching. During his 10-year playing career across various MLS teams, including New England, Columbus, Colorado, Seattle, and the LA Galaxy, he showcased his prowess, netting an impressive 42 goals in 183 MLS matches.

His journey with the Galaxy began in 2011 when he was picked during the draft and later signed with Los Angeles. Noonan continued his association with the team until the 2012 season, transitioning from player to assistant coach after LA declined his 2013 contract option. His pivotal role as an assistant coach marked the beginning of his coaching career, leading him to achieve the remarkable feat of MLS Coach of the Year in 2022.

Noonan's accolade stands as a testament to his tactical acumen, transforming Cincinnati into a formidable force within the MLS landscape, marking him as one of the brightest coaching prospects in American soccer.