COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — After weeks of rumors and curiosity, the deal’s finally done between the Columbus Crew and Caleb Porter.
Porter will become the 8th head coach in franchise history, according to a news release from the club. Porter, 43, replaces new U.S. Men’s National Team coach Gregg Berhalter. Porter led the Portland Timbers to the 2015 MLS Cup, defeating the Crew in the final match. Porter also led the University of Akron to an NCAA Championship in 2009.
Also joining the Crew is Westerville native Tim Bezbatchenko, who will serve as the new team President. Bezbatchenko comes over from Toronto FC where he served as General Manager and led the club to an MLS Championship.
“I am honored to join Columbus Crew SC, a club with a rich history in Major League Soccer and a city with great appreciation for its beloved club dating back to 1996,” said Porter in a news release. “It is exciting to be part of the vision that The Edwards Family and The Haslam Family have in mind for Crew SC and I look forward to working closely with Tim to build on the success the team has had in recent years. In the days and weeks ahead, I am eager to return to Ohio and begin working with our players and staff to prepare for the upcoming season. I look forward to meeting the dedicated supporters of the club and the chance for my family to be a part of this wonderful community is something that inspires me, as is the opportunity to work each day towards bringing a trophy to the City of Columbus.”
Columbus opens its preseason training January 23rd and its regular season March 2.