New LA Galaxy assistant coach Pat Noonan learned from some of MLS’ finest coaches during his nine year career in MLS and he is hoping to take a little of each of them in his new coaching venture.
Noonan elected to retire during the offseason after his first season with the Galaxy and immediately filled the vacated assistant coach slot previously by new club Technical Director Jovan Kirovski. During his nine year career in MLS, Noonan received a first-hand coaching clinic as he learned from three of MLS’ most storied bosses—Steve Nicol (New England Revolution), Sigi Schmid (Columbus Crew and Seattle Sounders FC), and Bruce Arena (LA Galaxy).
In his first preseason with the club, Noonan has been a regular with the Galaxy as he helps the staff lead them through fitness drills and even participating in jogs across the training ground.
Noonan discusses what he hopes to take from each of the three coaching legends below…
(On Bruce Arena…)
NOONAN: “I learned how a great coach handles adversity. Halfway through the year I think we were at the bottom of the table or close to it in the Western Conference, and he never once panicked. He kept his cool as did Curt and Dave and the players fed off that. At no point did he say I doubt that we can get in the playoffs or win a championship. He said it’s only a matter of time and we’re going to get in the playoffs and have a chance to win a championship, and he was right. I think that calmness was something I really admired and took note of.”
(On Sigi Schmid…)
NOONAN: “With Sigi, it was his passion to want to win and his coaching ability. Much like Bruce he’s very organized and has a great support staff. Like Bruce he cares so much about the players and the organization and he wanted to win. You admire that.”
(On Steve Nicol, his coach with New England…)
NOONAN: “Stevie Nicol was another coach I had for a long time. A very laid-back guy, as much of a player’s coach as you’ll find. Do whatever you want as long as you’re ready to come on game day to perform.”