Nov. 14, 2007
By Michael Lewis
LIFE GOES ON
Disappointed DiCicco focuses on Breakers
Tony DiCicco was disappointed he did not get the job as U.S. national women's coach. But as he knows, life goes on.
The former U.S. Women's National Team will continue his position as coach of the Boston Breakers in the second coming of an American professional women's league.
Former Sweden star Pia Sundhage was named U.S. coach Tuesday, becoming the first foreigner and second woman to fill that position.
"I was disappointed," DiCicco said in a phone interview from his Farmington, Conn. office Wednesday morning. "I thought I was the best coach. I still do."
DiCicco then went on to praise Sundhage who coached the Breakers in 2003.
"Pia Sundhage was the first choice of the players," he said. "I will support her to get the U.S. National Team back on track with its program."
DiCicco will focus his energies with the Breakers along with club general manager Joe Cummings to prepare the club for 2009.
"It is an exciting and challenging undertaking," he said.
The new league, which doesn't have a name yet, is targeted to begin play in the spring of 2009.
While U.S. international midfielder-forward Kristine Lilly played with the original Breakers of the Women's United Soccer Association (which folded in 2003), DiCicco doesn't see her performing with the current version.
He expects the 36-year-old Lilly to retire from the game after next year's Beijing Olympics.
"We're not expecting her to play," he said. "No one is expecting her to play after these Olympics. We expect him to be involved in the game as a spokesperson.
"We have to assume Kristine Lilly will hang them up after the Olympic run.”
DiCicco will resume his TV color commentary role for ESPN at the Women's College Cup in December and work a coaching symposium for the National Soccer Coaches Association of America. He also will continue coaching at his club, SoccerPlus, in Connecticut.
Prior to throwing his name into the women's national coach ring, DiCicco had been pursuing a job with NBC to do Olympic soccer games next August.
"I'd love to do that," he said. "There have been a couple of people who spoke to them on my behalf. I put it to a halt when I pursued the national job."