David Beckham’s former employee Phil Neville got a job at Portland Timbers.
The announcement that Phil Neville will be the Portland Timbers’ manager for the 2024–2025 season has angered fans. After losing Giovanni Savarese in the middle of the previous season, Portland tried to acquire the Englishman despite protests from club supporters, particularly the “Timbers Army.”
After leading the England women’s team for three years and Inter Miami for two, Neville has since taken on three managerial positions.
“We are thrilled to welcome Phil Neville as the new head coach of the Portland Timbers, and we look forward to making Phil and his family feel at home in Portland,” Timbers general manager Ned Grabavoy said in a statement confirming the decision, as per Daily Express.
“Phil’s character makes him the right person to lead this team forward as we continue to reshape the group with a goal of returning to sustained success,” statement added.
“His leadership qualities, diverse experience as a coach, and ambition to evolve made him a terrific fit here with us in Portland.”
Portland supporters are, however, baffled by Neville’s appointment. Neville was let go by Inter Miami after the 2023 season began with five wins and ten losses.
The Timbers Army Steering Committee released a harsh statement citing remarks made by Neville on his social media in 2012 that were deemed misogynistic.
“The Portland Timbers are currently rebuilding a team on the pitch in addition to their ongoing efforts to rebuild trust with their fans and the community,” the statement read.
“We are deeply disappointed that the club has reportedly settled on a finalist for head coach who has a history of sexist public statements that run counter to our ethos as a club, city and supporters’ group, and who also lacks a proven track record as a manager.”
The statement added, “We urge the Timbers to reconsider this hire and reevaluate other candidates before finalising a contract.”