When the RGVFC Toros kick off their third season in 2018, they will have their third different manager on the sideline. Junior Gonzalez, who replaced current Houston Dynamo head coach Wilmer Cabrera, has left the organization to become an assistant coach for the LA Galaxy.
He reunites with Sigi Schmid, who he worked under in the Seattle Sounders system, before signing on as the second head coach in Toros’ history. Junior has major California roots and the job was certainly one he would’ve regretted passing on.
His lone season in charge was a major downturn from 2016. The club finished 9-15-8 and missed the playoffs, one season after finishing the #2 seed in the USL Western Conference. Junior had to deal with massive roster overturn, with most of the 2016 star players signing with the Dynamo first team. While Toros fans were critical of his ability, I think he was dealt a rough deck. The main area I feel he could’ve done better in was establishing a club identity, but he will surely be a good hire for the Galaxy.
Houston GM Matt Jordan announced the club is already searching for the next Toros’ manager. As far as traits they may focus on, both Cabrera and Gonzalez speak Spanish, which is important to connect with the players and the city. It’s vital that the Toros have a similar style to the Dynamo, so a coach that’s worked with Wilmer in the past is absolutely a possibility.
Here’s a complete wild card, unlikely theory: Vicente Sanchez doesn’t feel he can play another full season, but has enjoyed his time with the organization. Could Wilmer and Matt Jordan convince him to stay around as the next Toros head coach? His leadership and knowledge of the game have helped the Dynamo reach this point in the playoffs. I love that idea, but expect it to be a coach or former player that worked with Wilmer at Chivas USA.