Is Tim Regan the right Head Coach for Indy Eleven?

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No one should ever complain about a win. This past weekend in the closing match for the Spring Season in the North American Soccer League, Indy Eleven smacked down the visiting FC Edmonton 3-0 and added another win to the record of Interim Head Coach Tim Regan. However, it’s not how you start but how you finish the race, and if any team in the North American Soccer League understands that it’s Indy Eleven. Starting out their second Spring Season in the NASL undefeated was unbelievable. The eventual crushing slide down the table over the middle of the season hurt.

Now, two games into his interim reign at Indy Eleven, Regan is undefeated, and pushed Indy Eleven to the 5th spot on the table as the season concluded June 13th. Indy has gone through an entire personality change as Regan has injected a fresh sense of excitement into not only the play on the field but the players as whole.

Now he must continue on in the Fall as interim head coach with the question looming on the front office of Indy Eleven:

Is Tim Regan the right Head Coach for Indy Eleven?

Here is a few things to keep in mind when answering that question

  1. Are the changes on the field a result of the environment of the club as a result of a coaching change or actually from Tim Regan himself? It’s difficult to say which one is which. If you watched the last few games, more specifically the Minnesota United game where Indy Eleven lost 3 – 1 or the Louisville City U.S. Open Cup match, in which Indy Eleven fell late in extra time you would definitely saw some sort of injection of energy was needed on the field no matter the area. However, as we can tell in any sport, coaching changes typically bring out the best in players initially. Whether the results and quality of play stay in tact for Indy Eleven heading into the Fall Season is entirely up in the air. The question still remains whether two games is enough to judge whether or not it’s Tim Regan’s coaching that has changed the aura surrounding Indy Eleven both on and off the field.
  2. Tim Regan has been with the club since the first season in North American Soccer League. This is key because it provides the ability to not have to bring someone in new who would need to take the time to learn the team. It’s obvious the relationship that Tim Regan has with his players both on and off the field as you can see they feel a lot more comfortable around him. If you watch his interview with Permanent Relegation, an Indy Eleven independent podcast/vodcast, he seems incredibly relaxed and the manner he conducts himself shows he is approaching by both supporters as well as his own players.
  3. One of the biggest difference between Juergen Sommer and Tim Regan which might be the most obvious for anyone to note is how he conducts himself on the sideline. Juergen Sommer would be calm, cool, and at times in his second Spring Season almost in a state of sedation. Tim Regan, however, is the opposite. In his first match as the Interim Head Coach for Indy Eleven, Tim Regan was seen on the sideline of the away match against Ft. Lauderdale Strikers screaming and yelling at the referee. This was a complete 180 from the sideline player we had gotten in the past from Juergen Sommer and felt like it was the biggest difference in two weeks under Tim Regan.

Regardless of the stance, two games is certainly not a big enough sample to know whether or not Tim Regan is ready to have the title of Head Coach of Indy Eleven. The two wins, a 2-1 late comeback against the Ft. Lauderdale Strikers and the aforementioned 3-0 thrashing of FC Edmonton certainly help pad his resume for now. While the sample might be small, the changes that have been felt watching the team both on and off the field have gifted Indy Eleven with a revival of the quality of their play as well as a revival of their chances to secure their first playoff spot in the Soccer Bowl in their short club history.

Peter Wilt, President of Indy Eleven, has said in a few different interviews that the decision of the permanent head coach will be made before the end of the Fall Season. Whether that five games, ten games, or whatever the amount may be it’s clear that not only is Tim Regan at the top of the head coaching list for Indy Eleven he should be the only name on the list when the club announces their hiring later in the fall.

Main Photo Courtesy of IndyEleven.com